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What Do I Need to Know About Education Visas in Thailand?

If you’re considering pursuing your language learning journey in Thailand, understanding the nuances of the Education (ED) visa is crucial. In this blog post, we’ll unravel the essential information you need to know about acquiring and navigating the education visa process in Thailand.

What Types of Education Visas Are in Thailand?

In Thailand, a Non-Immigrant “ED” Visa is issued to applicants who are students of educational establishments in Thailand approved by Thai authorities. The Education (ED) Visas cater to diverse educational pursuits. The ED Visa, sought for long-term activities like language courses or degree programs, necessitates both an approval and acceptance letter from the governmental authorities and a recognized institution. 

It’s crucial to recognize that the ED visa for language schools in Thailand differs from that of universities. Another option is the Non-Formal Education Visa, suitable for short-term courses, workshops, internships, or conferences, providing flexibility for skill enhancement without a long-term commitment. Our primary focus in this article will be on a language education visa course

How Can I Get an Education Visa? 

We make the process as seamless as possible for you. The Education visa is available to individuals between 15 and 50. To obtain an education visa in Thailand, you will need to meet a few requirements:

  • If you currently hold an international English program or Thai program visa from university, or any other types of visa, and wish to transition to an Education (ED) visa for language courses, a direct conversion isn’t feasible. In such cases, the recommended procedure involves leaving and re-entering Thailand. This can be accomplished through a visa exemption, which is extendable for either 30 days or via a 60-90 day tourist visa. 
  • ED visa application process takes 45-90 days depending on nationality and document submission by the applicants.
  • If you apply with enough time, you can convert your tourist visa into an education visa domestically without having to leave Thailand.
  • It’s crucial to note that the 90-day Free Visa on Arrival for Russians cannot be converted to an ED visa, so any Russian applicant who wishes to apply for an ED visa should apply for a 60-day tourist visa at the Royal Thai Embassy overseas. 
  • For applicants hailing from nationalities that necessitate a Police Clearance Certificate, obtaining an ALA letter is mandatory. This letter serves as documentation to be presented to the Royal Thai Police to apply for a Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) which is an essential prerequisite for the ED visa application process.

The ALA Team will help you through every stage of the ED visa application process and with all the required documents.

What are the conditions of an ED Visa in Thailand?

  • For those considering visa conversion, the fee is approximately 2,000 baht per conversion, providing a year-long validity. However, visa extensions are still required based on the course duration, with each extension costing 1,900 baht. 
  • The Education (ED) Visa, was initially granted for a duration of 90 days. The first extension provides an additional 30 days, while the subsequent extensions each grant an additional 60 days. 
  • ED Visa holders for language courses can only extend their stay in Thailand for a maximum period of 12 months at a time. However, it’s crucial to note that if the cumulative duration, subtracted by the time spent completing beginner and intermediate levels, falls short of covering the advanced level, you may need to exit and re-enter Thailand to continue your studies at the advanced level. This process allows for a seamless continuation of education, ensuring a comprehensive and uninterrupted learning experience.
  • The ED Visa for language course is a ‘single-entry’ visa.
  • If you plan to depart the country during its validity, obtaining a re-entry permit is necessary. Without a re-entry permit, the ED visa will be cancelled upon re-entering Thailand. 
  • Re-entry permits, costing 1,000 baht for a single use or 3,800 baht for multiple uses, can be obtained at immigration offices or airports (Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang). It’s crucial to note that a re-entry permit does not exempt you from visa extensions, and timely returns for extensions are necessary to prevent visa revocation past the extension date. 
  • Upon leaving Thailand with a re-entry permit, your existing extension status remains effective, and the countdown for the 90-day report (TM47) resets with each re-entry. It’s important to recognize that the 90-day report is separate from the visa extension process. 
  • If you haven’t departed the country within the initial 90 days, your initial visa extension and the 90-day report align, enabling you to manage both requirements conveniently at the immigration office during a single visit.

These conditions highlight the importance of understanding the intricacies of the ED Visa to ensure a smooth and compliant stay in Thailand.

How Many Times Can You Get an Education Visa in Thailand? 

While repeating the same language course is NOT permitted, ED Visa holders have the option to enroll in any other alternative language courses at ALA Language School after completing an initial year ED visa program. This not only facilitates continued language development but also serves as a means to extend your stay for a consecutive year, offering you a dynamic and adaptable approach to your continuous educational journey in Thailand. 

What are the duration and requirements for ED visa programs at ALA Language School?

ALA Language School presently offers three (3) language courses with ED visa programs as follows: 

Our Thai education visa lasts up to 14 months. You will spend your first 8 months studying Thai at beginner and intermediate levels. Then, you must leave the country and return for the final 6-month advanced course. 

Our English education visa lasts up to 11.5 months. You will seamlessly study the whole course from beginner to advanced levels without leaving Thailand. 

Our Chinese education visa lasts up to 13.5 months. You will complete your first 9 months of studying a Chinese course at beginner and intermediate levels. Then, you must leave and re-enter Thailand for the final 4.5-month advanced course. 

If you have already completed your Thai education visa courses, ALA Language School offers opportunities beyond Thai language studies. Explore our English language course and a Chinese language course, extending your educational journey and allowing you to continue living and studying in Thailand. With our commitment to a transformative experience, we provide a platform for extended stays, legal residency, quality education, immersive language learning, and seamless cultural integration, unlocking the full potential of your time in the Land of Smiles.

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