Thailand is home to many schools that caters to international students of all ages and levels. If the prospect of studying in Thailand is pleasing to you, then you should be taking the necessary steps in order to secure for yourself a student visa.
As mentioned before, you will need to have the right visa with you when authorities ask for those documents. Most people take advantage of the tourist visa in order to study, a practice that may have worked in the past but will have dire consequences if done these days.
Penalties include blacklisting and paying a hefty fine if you’re found overstaying and carrying the wrong visa. Worse, you could get blacklisted for up to five years for those violations.
In any case, let’s talk more about what you need to apply for a Student Visa, officially referred to as the “Non-Immigrant ED visa.”
Who Are Eligible?
The ED visa is for any foreign national aged 12 years old and above who wish to come to Thailand for educational purposes. These purposes could include a full educational course at any university or college in Thailand, a short-term training course, or an internship.
In order to qualify, the student must provide proof that he or she has enrolled into an institution that is recognized by the government. In addition, the educational course must consume at least 8-10 hours per week, or 100 hours for every 3 months.
The recognition of the government of the educational institution is important. This is to protect applicants like yourself from being duped into studying at an unsanctioned facility whose diplomas or recognitions turn out to be invalid or useless in the long run.
In order to apply, first you will have to establish or prove to the Embassy or Consulate that you have been accepted into an academic institution in Thailand for your educational course. You can do this by presenting the following documents, which you can request from the school:
- Letter of acceptance
- Evidence of enrolment like tuition fee receipts
- Course description
- School registration documents
You can attach these to your application, or you can ask the school to forward these documents to the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate in your home nation.
Now, in addition to these, you will also need to furnish these documents for your application:
- Passport, with validity of at least six months from the date of your arrival in Thailand
- Fully filled out application form
- 2 recent passport sized photos
- Proof of financial capacity of $500 in bank account
Once you’ve completed these documents, you can simply submit your application to the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate at your home nation.
More Details on the ED Visa
The Non-Immigrant ED visa limits your stay to 90 days initially. If your course takes more than 90 days, you will automatically receive a 1-year extension after you make your first 90-day report with immigration.
When making your 90-day report, you’re expected to have completed your financial obligations to the institution in order to be granted a 1-year permit to stay.
You would also need to make subsequent reports every 90 days to update the government of your status and whereabouts in the Kingdom.