Ultimate Guide to SMART Visa in Thailand

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In this article you will find all the details you need to know in Your Ultimate Guide to Obtaining a SMART Visa in Thailand.

The Thailand Smart Visa is a visa category that has been developed specifically to attract highly skilled labor, investors, executives, and startup business owners. It provides a visa opportunity for those who are interested in working or investing in the Kingdom of Thailand in the specific industries listed below:

  • Affluent, Medical and Wellness Tourism
  • Agriculture and Biotechnology
  • Alternative Dispute Resolution
  • Automation and Robotics
  • Aviation and Logistics
  • Biofuels and Biochemicals
  • Digital
  • Environmental Management and Renewable Energy
  • Food for the Future
  • Human Resource Development in Science and Technology
  • Medical Hub
  • Next-Generation Automotive
  • Smart Electronics

There are various categories you can apply for depending on the purpose or activity that you wish to conduct.  They include: 

  • T (Talent): Professionals in the scientific and technological fields who earn more than THB 100,000 monthly.
  • I (Investor): Investors willing to invest THB 20 million.
  • E (Executive): Bachelor’s degree or higher, at least ten years of professional experience, and monthly wages over THB 200,000.
  • S (Startup): Founders of startup companies, depositing THB 600,000 with a 3-month hold period and possessing at least 25% ownership of the company within 12 months.
  • O (Others): Members of a smart visa holder’s immediate family.

Even with your SMART or LTR Visa, you need to remain compliant with tax and statutory requirements. Engage Aster Lion to get your visa and look after these requirements while you focus on growing your business!

The Application Process for Acquiring a Thailand Smart Visa

To apply for a Thailand Smart Visa, follow the application process outlined below:

  1. Register for a Thailand Smart Visa qualifying endorsement at https://smart-visa.boi.go.th and set up an online account.
  2. Fill out the application form for the category of Smart Visa you want (T, I, E, S, or O) and have a PDF version of the required papers to upload and submit. You agree to the qualifying endorsement requirements by submitting the online application form.
  3. Then, the OSS will notify the applicant, Immigration, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the appropriate agencies of the outcome of the qualification endorsement application within 30 working days of receiving all required documentation.
  4. Within 60 days of the date the endorsement letter was issued—which will be one of the supporting documents for the application—the qualifying applicant can then move forward with applying for the issuance of a Smart Visa. The processing charge is 10,000 Baht in cash for each year of the valid visa.

You can apply directly but if you need assistance with this process, you can reach out to the Aster Lion team for a Free Consultation.  You can also get your Free Digital Nomad Checklist!

Did you know that Thailand offers different types of Visa. Still deciding which option is better for you.  You can check out this article on Thailand Digital Nomad Visa: SMART vs. Long Term Resident to help you decide. Or you can check out our Ultimate Guide to Becoming a Digital Nomad in Thailand as a comprehensive guide with all options available to you. 

Do Thailand Digital Nomads Have to Pay Tax?

Your obligation to pay tax will vary greatly depending on the type of Visa you secure.  Because of the complexity, it’s best to engage with a Tax or Employer of Record expert such as Aster Lion to ensure you are compliant with your tax and statutory requirements. 

How Hiring a Professional Employer of Record Partner Can Help

A professional Employer of Record (EOR provider) can help your firm fulfill your Thailand staffing requirements and you can save money, paperwork, labor costs, and legal troubles by working with a firm that specializes in Thailand EOR & payroll solutions.


These specialized firms already know and comply with Thai employment law, whether you need a local labor force supplemented by in-person or remote workers, or you just need assistance paying your employees properly.


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