Phuket Taxi and Transfers

Results 1 to 20 of 20
Like Tree6Likes
  • 4 Post By Ian Forbes
  • 1 Post By Dazza
  • 1 Post By Moo Uaon

Thread: Thai drivers license for tourists

  1. #1
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333

    Thai drivers license for tourists

    I just went through the ritual for the fourth time and there have been a few changes. It is still an ordeal that takes the better part of a week and it's full of bureaucracy, but that is how it has always been here. Some people would just rather pay the fine when you get caught. Me? I don't trust what some policeman on a power trip could do if I don't have my papers in order.

    If you only are going to be in country for a month then get an international license BEFORE you come. You won't need a Thai license.

    However, if you are going to be here longer than a month then the law requires you have a valid Thai driver's license. There is one for cars and a different one for motorbikes and scooters.

    The process is tedious but required and it's easier if done in order.

    1. Get some form of residency document from the hotel where you are staying, giving your name and the address of the hotel.... and signed by the manager. Without this document nothing will happen. I had my own made and printed out a bunch of copies.

    2. Take passport, residency document and at least 2 passport photos to the immigration office. If you don't have your own photos they will charge you 200 baht to do it there. I always have extras because I do this every year.
    In Chiang Mai the immigration office is located in building A of the Promenada Mall way out on hwy 1141. It is in the basement level. There are 3 little offices a bit scattered and you need to know which one. You can waste time standing in the wrong line waiting to talk to someone. There are always line ups of people looking for extensions on their visa. That is the WRONG office for drivers license requirements. The little office next to the photo shop will copy your documents and process them over night. There is NO one day delivery. You pick them up the next day. Cost is 600 baht.

    3. Go to hospital of your choice for the 5 simple test document from doctor. Mostly just BS. You will get a printed copy and it costs 100 baht.

    4. Take the new copy of your residency document and your passport and old drivers license to the motor vehicle office. In ChiangMai it is on hwy 106 just past the Rajavej hospital. You will also need the insurance number from the previous year of your vehicle or motorbike (last year 2558, this year 2559). The vehicle will be tested before they issue your new number. If you just bought the vehicle then you have to do the whole process of registering it in your name. That takes a while. The insurance on a bike is 660 baht and another 120 baht for office forms and registering. And 60 baht for testing. I don't know the cost for autos.

    5. Once you have all these documents it's off to the drivers license office in a different part of the city. In Chiang Mai it's out on hwy 108 near the Big-C. This process will take the better part of a day. I got there at 1:30 and had my license at 6:30 just as the office was closing. Go to reception. Get more copies of passport and other forms. Back to reception for a number and to fill out form for new license. Don't be surprised if there are 300 people ahead of your number. They will eventually get to you. When the office down stairs closes at 4:30 the extra staff move upstairs to move the whole process more quickly. Once you get to the last part it goes pretty quickly. The lady takes all your forms, last years license, and takes your picture. In 5 minutes you have a nice new plastic license with your picture on it. Cost is 260 baht for car and 100 baht for motorbike.

    The test? A simple red, green, amber light test to see if you have eyes.

    However, the nice big surprise for me is my new license is good for TWO years, and not just one like previously.
    Last edited by Ian Forbes; 31st December 2015 at 16:18.
    Quarky, Hatari, Tingtong and 1 others like this.

  2. #2
    เมืองเชียงราย Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Rivo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Chiang Rai
    Posts
    7,125
    Great write up Ian, thanks for your effort.
    A Wise Man Once Said "Nothing"

  3. #3
    Cadet Gold lakeboy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    380
    Good information to know, thanks. I just assumed I could use an International Drivers License. Didn't realize it was only good for a month in the country.

  4. #4
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Zablive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Phuket
    Posts
    9,708
    I always was advised it was good in country for 3 months continuously (Aus IDP)

    http://thailand.angloinfo.com/transp...ving-licences/

    Have you considered a METV or a Non O (Retirement) visa Ian?
    You could get a 5 year licence then.
    Last edited by Zablive; 1st January 2016 at 17:19.

  5. #5
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Zablive View Post
    I always was advised it was good in country for 3 months continuously (Aus IDP)

    Using a Foreign Driving Licence in Thailand | Thailand

    Have you considered a METV or a Non O (Retirement) visa Ian?
    You could get a 5 year licence then.
    I know that, Baz, but getting a retirement visa requires more hoops to jump through in Canada and it costs more money. I never want to stay longer than 5 months anyway, and the triple entry suits me perfectly.

  6. #6
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    เชียงใหม่
    Posts
    18,932
    i used my Oz DL for about 5 years without a problem...even got an insurance claim while using it.
    Oz has a treaty were our DL is accepted there.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

  7. #7
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Moo Uaon View Post
    i used my Oz DL for about 5 years without a problem...even got an insurance claim while using it.
    Oz has a treaty were our DL is accepted there.
    Good to know, Lew. I have heard so many conflicting stories from so many people, INCLUDING THAI OFFICIALS, that I just thought I better go through the whole process. I don't want to get shot again, or have my motorbike impounded when I'm off in the boonies of Thailand somewhere. Every officer seems to have their own interpretation of rules and laws. I've gone to the same office at different times and got different answers from different people.

  8. #8
    ประเทศไทยเพื่อน Uber Star Dazza's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    UdonThani
    Posts
    1,201
    PeteGill likes this.

  9. #9
    Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Hatari's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Thailand
    Posts
    6,581
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post
    I've gone to the same office at different times and got different answers from different people.
    Could re-write that Ian

    I've gone to the same office at different times and got different answers from the same people

    But no variance on this one, Chanthaburi Immigration will not issue a proof of residency letter for any person who has a visa of less than six months duration, clearly ruling out anyone on a Tourist Visa; allowing only for work, retirement etc

    They are pleasant people to deal with (my man's a road cyclist, therefore a good man!) but that's the way they interpret things.

  10. #10
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    เชียงใหม่
    Posts
    18,932
    i flew to udon thani once and had a car booked to pick up at the airport.
    got there and realised i'd left my DL back in CM...oops!

    anyway,they rang someone and it didn't sound good but when i said i'd lived in LOS for many years and had my own car there it seemed to be the correct answer and they gave me the car.
    also got pulled over by the cops in it later...oh no!!

    they first asked where i was going and i told them i had been to see my newly born son and reached in my pocket and pulled my phone out with a pic of him on it and showed it to them and they waved me on after believing my story that i was only doing 95 in the 90 zone they were pulling people over in.
    luckily didn't ask for a DL 55
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

  11. #11
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Zablive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Phuket
    Posts
    9,708
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Forbes View Post
    I know that, Baz, but getting a retirement visa requires more hoops to jump through in Canada and it costs more money. I never want to stay longer than 5 months anyway, and the triple entry suits me perfectly.
    Except triple entry visas are no longer available anywhere AFAIK since they brought in the METV.!

  12. #12
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Zablive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Phuket
    Posts
    9,708
    One thing is constant - every Land Transport Office and Policeman will treat this issue differently! TIT 555!

  13. #13
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Zablive View Post
    Except triple entry visas are no longer available anywhere AFAIK since they brought in the METV.!
    I have heard that from other sources as well. It seems that Thailand no longer wants tourists. They no longer want men who support Thai families and part of their economy. 90 days isn't going to do it for me. There are far more welcoming countries than Thailand. I personally know 3 long time visitors to Thailand who are no longer going to come. I'm talking farangs with farang wives.

  14. #14
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    เชียงใหม่
    Posts
    18,932
    double entry TV will get you 6 months with only 1 border hop.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

  15. #15
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Moo Uaon View Post
    double entry TV will get you 6 months with only 1 border hop.
    Thanks, Lew. that makes more sense. I never did understand why Thailand forces you to go out of the country just to turn around and come back in. If I wanted to go to Laos, Cambodia, Burma or Vietnam then I would do so. I'm quite happy staying in Thailand for 5 months. There is still more that I want to explore. Why give oppressive Myanmar 500 baht of my money? I would rather give it to someone in Thailand.

  16. #16
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    เชียงใหม่
    Posts
    18,932
    the reason is they can refuse you entry or detain you if they wish...rather than go looking for someone.

    but of course many just stay as long as they can.

    double entry TV...1 border hop and 1 extension @ 1900 baht will get you 5 months. gotta be cheaper than rocking up to the border twice.
    Last edited by Moo Uaon; 2nd January 2016 at 14:23.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

  17. #17
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Moo Uaon View Post
    the reason is they can refuse you entry or detain you if they wish...rather than go looking for someone.

    but of course many just stay as long as they can.

    double entry TV...i border hop and 1 extension @ 1900 baht will get you 5 months. gotta be cheaper than rocking up to the border twice.
    Exactly. Much worse for guys living further away than I do in Chiang Mai. I have a half reason to go up there anyway, because I can visit Pui in Phan and stay over night. But, for people living in Bangkok, or even Pattaya, it is a long haul to the nearest border and it gets to be a pain after a while. Too bad we can't just go to immigration, report that you are still alive, still here and pay 2000 baht. I hate being forced to do anything, and especially something silly like this.

    I know there are guys who just enter Thailand and stay forever without ever reporting. They survive in some sort of fashion, but I doubt if they are a serious risk to the country. If they get in the drug scene to make money to survive then they are usually cutting into someone else's "territory" and get "taken care of" and disappear.

  18. #18
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Zablive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Phuket
    Posts
    9,708
    Plus another 30 day extension (if necessary) on the second entry at Immi.

  19. #19
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน Moo Uaon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    เชียงใหม่
    Posts
    18,932
    ^ IF stays 5 months. that example was to show him the easier way of doing it.
    Ian Forbes likes this.
    FACE YOUR FEARS LIVE YOUR DREAMS

  20. #20
    Uber Star Soi wanderer Thai Dreamer ผู้เพ้อฝัน
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    20,333
    Quote Originally Posted by Moo Uaon View Post
    ^ IF stays 5 months. that example was to show him the easier way of doing it.
    Fits me perfectly. I leave just after my daughter's two kids birthdays in late October, and by that time most of the better salmon fishing is over. I get back just before the best of the trout fishing begins, and I'm home for my other granddaughter's birthday.

    However, in future I might cut my Thai holiday shorter by a month. Trout and steelhead season has been extending further into November recently. And, with all the smoke in northern Thailand in March I might go home a bit earlier.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •