To fully comprehend how Thailand Elite Membership works in a simple and easy-to-understand terms, the article first starts off with all its terminology. Yes, you hear it right, terminology. Many agents often show you instantly a comparison table or an infographic table of each package, which seems like a thoughtful move, until you realize the fees are still not clear. At Thaielite Express, we will clarify the different definition of ‘fees’ that range from “membership (fee)” to “additional membership (fee),” and etc.
Together we will explore all cost requirements you are to encounter both before and after your successful application. Some costs, such as membership fee are a prerequisite, and some, such as additional membership fee, is an option of which you can exercise both before and after your status as a Thailand Elite member.
After an educative session on all of Thailand Elite terminology, we will move to study the comparison table. While a certain fee can occur in some packages and not in others, an overall comparison is an important factor to help you fully understand Thailand Elite in its full glory and selecting your most suitable option. Apart from cost requirements, an infographic table will also feature all complimentary privileges a Thailand Elite member is entitled to receive within each membership package.
This article functions, to put it simply, as a complete guide for you. Ready? Here we go!
There is a total of seven primary terms involved in Thailand Elite’s memberships that you need to know. Understanding them is, as mentioned above, a contributing factor to finding your right Thailand Elite Membership Package:
1) Membership Fee
A membership fee is a core component of Thai Elite’s cost requirement—a prerequisite for a successful application. The Thailand Elite Visa belongs to a tourist visa section. The membership fee is to be paid within 3 months after the approval of your application.
To be granted a Thailand Elite Ultimate Privilege membership, for example, an applicant must pay a membership fee of THB 2,000,000 (VAT excluded).
2) Additional Membership Fee
Thailand’s such a great country. Why enjoy it alone? Thailand Elite extends the long-term residency visa option for applicants’ his/her family members. Family packages are available, such as Elite Family Excursion, Elite Family Alternative, Elite Family Premium, where the Core Member applicant has the option to add his/her immediate family members with his application. Of course there’s additional fee to pay, however additional family members receive a discounted and great value rate. After all, being together as a family is priceless.
NOTE: The term “Core member” refers to the main applicant who is allowed to add on his/her “Next” or legitimate family member(s). It is important to note that an additional member(s) granted must be your immediate family members, such as legitimate parent, step-parent, married spouse, children, step-children, and civil union.
3) Transfer Fee
A transfer fee refers to an option in which a member is allowed a one-time transfer of the remaining validity of the privilege entry visa to another person, and to exercise such an option comes with a fee payable at 20% of the prevailing application fee at the time of the transfer.
Suppose you now own an Elite Ultimate Privilege membership of which an application fee is, as of now, THB 2,000,000 (VAT excluded), your transfer fee is thus THB 400,000 (20% of THB 2,000,000 excluding VAT).
NOTE: This option (and thus its fee) is included only in two membership packages including Elite Ultimate Privilege and Elite Family Premium.
4) Annual Fee
For a certain package that offers more privileges than others, there is an annual fee.
This fee is, again, included only in Elite Ultimate Privilege and Elite Family Premium—the two most ultimate packages of all.
5) Upgrade Fee
An upgrade fee refers to an option in which an Elite Privilege Access member can upgrade to full membership status, or Elite Ultimate Privilege, with an upgrade fee of THB 1,500.000 (VAT excluded).
As mentioned, this option is applicable for the Elite Easy Access Membership. The membership is designed as an individual long-term residency visa for a person who might, one day, upgrade to Elite Ultimate Privilege.
6) 90-Day Report
Under Thai law, a foreigner must perform a reporting for each 90-day period of his/her continuous stay. If you have stayed in Thailand for a year, for example, you would need to report to the Immigration Office four times. If you, however, left Thailand at any point, your 90-day period would be reset to zero. Only upon re-entering Thailand do you begin again your 90-day period, in which day one starts at such re-entering date.
With Thailand Elite Privilege Visa Memberships, the 90-day report, fortunately, is free of charge and done through Thailand Elite personal VIP concierge. The reason we included it here in cost consideration is that if for some reason, you do not perform the reporting, you may incur a fine.
7) Stay Extension
To comprehend what is a stay extension, one must understand first what is, after all, a stay here. The term refers to a length of time one resides in Thailand. For all Thai Elite packages, a one-year length of stay is granted. But if you wish to continue to stay longer than that, e.g., for a continuous period of over 365 days, you must apply for a stay extension.
A lot of applicants mistake a stay extension as a membership validity. If you look for information about Elite Easy Access, for example, you see how you can get a membership validity of 5 years. That figure is not your permitted length of stay, but rather visa validity. No matter how long your “membership validity” is, say 20 years, you can reside in Thailand for 20 continuous year as long as you apply every year for an extension of stay. Extension of stay is free and is a mere formality to be conducted at the Thai Immigration Bureau.
The term “membership validity” is, to put it simply, a life expectancy of your card, a period during which your Thailand Elite visa and your membership as a Thai Elite member is valid, not your permitted length of stay per entry.
2. Comparison and Privileges
NOTE: The Thailand Elite Visa program offers a total of seven membership packages. Of all its seven memberships, four can be classified as individual membership, and three can be classified as a family membership. This article features only information among individual membership packages, for more details on family membership packages, please visit our previous article, here.
As illustrated in Table 1, all packages require a Core membership fee. For an additional or family membership within a package, only Elite Privilege Access grants such option. The Elite Ultimate Privilege does the same but puts its additional family membership in another separate package, Elite Family Premium.
As mentioned above, the annual fee and transfer fee are included only in Elite Ultimate Privilege, and for an option to upgrade to Elite Ultimate Privilege, one can do so only as an Elite Easy Access member.
The two requirements, 90-Day Report and (optional) Stay Extension, are applied to all membership programs. You should not, again, mistake the term “validity” here as a permitted one-year length of stay.
The differences in the amount of membership fee affect all areas of privileges. But, as we always advise our clients, the most suitable package is not the one that gives you the most but rather precisely what you need. If you and your family members are, for example, certain that golf or spa is not quite your thing and health is more your priority, then there is no reason to go for something other than a package that prioritizes such a lifestyle and routine of yours.
Thaielite Express has been an authorized General Sales and Services Agent since 2013. We hope that with our guide, you can comprehend Thai Elite Visa costs and benefits better and find your suitable option. Should you have any questions, however, please do not hesitate to visit our website for more details on Thailand Elite Visa and Membership, or send your questions directly to us via email: firstname.lastname@example.org. We support English, French, German, and Chinese languages. We reply within 24 hours.