How can a foreign family with children live in Thailand for a long time

Thailand is easy to come to, as citizens of most countries do not need a visa to stay here for 30 days (at the time of writing, this period has been increased to 45 days).

If you want to spend several months in Thailand, then you can use a tourist visa or a Special Tourist Visa (STV).

See also: Advantages and disadvantages of the Special Tourist Visa (STV) visa. How to get Thai STV

If you want to stay in Thailand for a year or more, then a study visa is most suitable for this.

See also: How to get an Education visa in Pattaya

If you want to spend several years in Thailand and you do not mind spending 600,000 baht or more on it, then you can use the Thai Elite Visa.

See also: What is Thai Elite Visa and how much does it cost

For families with children who study in a Thai school, there is another option. The children themselves must obtain a ‘Non-Immigrant ED’ (education) visa. So, for parents whose child has got a study visa, there is an opportunity to receive a ‘Non-Immigrant O’, which is sometimes also called Guardian Visa.

Once the child has got a student visa, the child's parent will be able to apply for Non-Immigrant O on the basis of being the guardian of a student studying in Thailand. While any reputable international school will provide you with the proper paperwork for this, there are two main things to be aware of. First, it requires 500,000 baht to be deposited into a Thai bank account in your name upon application. The money can be withdrawn after your visa is issued but must be returned to your account 3 months prior to the annual renewal of your next visa application.

The second important thing to note is that only one Guardian visa is issued per child. Thus, if both parents require a guardian visa, they will need to have at least two children studying in Thailand, and for each guardian visa, 500,000 baht (i.e. 1 million baht in total) will be required to be deposited in a Thai bank account in the name of each parent.

That is, only one ‘Non-Immigrant O’ visa can be obtained per child. But if only one parent wants to stay in Thailand, then he can take care of 2-3 children, there are no barriers to this by law.


At a minimum, this is another option for a long-term stay in Thailand.

This is actually quite a popular way to live in Thailand with families.

The money in the bank account is always yours, which means that unlike the Thai Elite Visa, which costs from 600,000 baht, the Guardian Visa is much cheaper.

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