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Phuket Opinion: Click to end the outdated TM30

Phuket Opinion: Click to end the outdated TM30

PHUKET: The TM30 Immigration form requiring landlords who provide accommodation to foreigners to inform Immigration within 24 hours of the arrival of their tenants has been getting a bad rap these past few weeks, and much of the criticism has been bang on target.

By The Phuket News

Sunday 11 August 2019, 09:00AM

Meet Thai Immigration’s ’Section 38’ app. Images: Google Play

Meet Thai Immigration’s ’Section 38’ app. Images: Google Play

For long-stay foreigners it certainly is an issue. The fact that by law landlords must submit the form to authorities every time their tenants return home, whether from staying elsewhere in the country or abroad, is creating a burden. Who wants a tenant that causes so much hassle for because he flits in and out of the country on business or is a retiree enjoying short-stay holidays elsewhere in Thailand? Hang on, isn’t that the type of income-spending foreigners that Thailand wants? Nevermind.

Technically, the TM30 doesn’t apply to tourists as the legal requirement is on the hotels and guesthouses, but in the booming era of home-stay platforms such as Airbnb, it is becoming an Immigration issue for independent landlords providing accommodation for tourists.

Enter the newly launched app “Section 38”, named after the relevant section of the Thailand Immigration Act of 1979, released by the Immigration Bureau. The new app might help to ease this burden, but only if it worked. (Click here )

But much worse is the requirement for foreigners to re-register their address after staying away from registered even for just one night, as required under Section 37 (c) of the now 40-year-old Thailand Immigration Act. This fun one is complied with under the TM28 form.


A 24-hour reporting period is ridiculous for long-stay foreigners, especially if they have just returned home from a business trip inside the country. Worse, for those arriving back to Thailand from abroad, this issue can be easily dealt with while clearing immigration at the airport. That failure actually makes the Section 38 app look sadly funny.

Further, the argument that bad guys will just ignore such rules at will, leaving these requirements to be suffered only by the good guys can’t be defeated.

Everyone understands the need for some registration of foreigners staying in the country – keeping in mind that it has been just one week since the major public safety scare in the capital, and especially keeping in mind the Erawan shrine bombing – but the law must be updated and the means for abiding by the law must to be dragged into the 21st Century.

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ematt | 16 August 2019 - 18:57:27

Re: "my Thai wife and her wonderful family", and you subject them to your constant disparagement of Thai culture? Pity.

BenPendejo | 16 August 2019 - 09:50:06

ematt..."vile, racist hate speech"???  Whew, I think my Thai wife and her wonderful family might argue that. Most of my rants target institutional corruption, greed and short-sightedness that hurts everyone in this beautiful country. I promise, if I hated this place and the people, I would leave. I love it here

GerryT81 | 15 August 2019 - 17:49:38

"I moved to Thailand for the horse"Wow,that's something.Probably the first and the only one to do so.That explains a lot and makes any further comment superfluous,except for "I call that hypocrisy".In that case you should learn the difference between many/much and a whole nation first.

Christy Sweet | 14 August 2019 - 12:20:19

It's a constant theme from many comments that criticism and generalities directed at Thailand are wrong, yet in the next sentence they will do exactly the same to other nationalities. I call that hypocrisy.

Christy Sweet | 14 August 2019 - 12:16:41

Just like many reading this, I moved to Thailand for the horse. I love the horse, and also remain for the horse.  

GerryT81 | 13 August 2019 - 18:13:30

Mrs.Sweet,as you don't like the Thai culture,why did you move here?Did someone force you to do so? And if S-Korea or Japan are commendable,why don't you relocate.In my opinion it would be best to move back to the USA.With so much arrogant people over there it is the perfect place for you.

Christy Sweet | 13 August 2019 - 11:46:54

Thais are not a race no mater how many appear to not understand this. It is the culture I criticize, other Asian nationalities are commendable such as S. Korea and Japan. 

Christy Sweet | 13 August 2019 - 11:27:32

 I can argue my point without resorting to name calling and offering up personal opinions on my detractors, something sadly lacking in their comments.  

Pascale | 12 August 2019 - 15:13:05

@agogohome.Fully agree! Even worse that responses to her comments are sometimes blocked.Wondering why the "Rooster "story involving her isn't available on here anymore.The last hope for everyone will be probably the Thai immigration.

ematt | 12 August 2019 - 12:50:17

Yes agogo. Also Jack, Ben, and Kurt. Vile racist hate speech. We can only hope immigration catches up to them soon. They are an embarrassment to the expat community.

Christy Sweet | 12 August 2019 - 12:33:55

Because not all forums protect sexpats' fragile sensibilities is why I'm not banned on all forums, just the one that does-Thai Visa. Some editors appreciate alternative viewpoints, others want to censor them.

agogohome | 11 August 2019 - 18:59:14

Christy Sweet has been banned from making comments on almost every forum in Thailand. Why hasn't  TPN gotten rid of this abusive vial  troll?  

Christy Sweet | 11 August 2019 - 15:39:57

 Again, I understand it to be only when you leave the country. But since it's such a good little earner at fines of 800 baht a pop, bringing in millions, much of which is not going to be receipted- officers are applying their own rules.  No matter, no sex pat is going to let a little hassle get in the way of getting cheap sex, and Immigration knows it.  

CaptainJack69 | 11 August 2019 - 14:43:52

Why not issue foreigners with tracking collars when we arrive in the country. They could be big heavy metal things, maybe with spikes on to stop us getting too close to Thailand's' famously saintly native population. Fit them with sturdy locks so they can't be removed. Welcome to Thailand. Pay and get out.

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