Living in Koh Phangan is paradise. Island life is suiting me to a T; and to get the ultimate life, one might have to bend a few rules. Visa extensions are becoming my new best friend and learning how to do the process smoothly is now becoming my forte. If you’ve ever wondered how easy it is to extend your tourist visa from Koh Tao, Koh Phangan or Koh Samui… then read ahead!
- You can get a photocopy of your passport, passport photo and the forms there but you will pay 80 baht
- Mondays and Fridays are the busiest days so aim to go Tuesday-Thursday
- Immigration is closed on weekends
- They ask you to cover up your shoulders and knees
- You can get it all completed in one day (an hour or two if the queue is small)
- There’s even a cafe if you need a pit stop
Koh Phangan to Koh Samui
I wanted to get the job done as soon as possible so I took the first ferry across to Samui from Thong Sala pier in Phangan at 7.20am with Lomprayah. This service takes only thirty minutes and has air conditioning, toilets and a shop selling basic snacks and drinks.
When arriving at Samui, the first thing to do is to find a motorbike taxi that will take you to immigration and wont rip you off. Of course you can hire your own motorbike to drive, but I personally enjoyed the feeling of having absolutely no stress.
To hire a driver to take you there, back and wait for you outside immigration, it should cost around 400 baht. Any cheaper than that and you’ve haggled yourself a bargain.
Arrive at Immigration
There are signs everywhere around the immigration office asking you to cover your shoulders and knees. Plenty of people were dressed in skimpy clothing including myself, so they’re obviously not strict; but just incase they’re having an off day or for any reason you need to fight your case, I’d suggest you at least taking a scarf to wrap around your shoulders.
Firstly when arriving at the immigration office, you will see a café on your left and a small white office to the right. If you don’t have a form, photocopies of your passport and current visa and passport photos then head into this room to complete all of these tasks. For all of the above it cost me 80 baht.
Head up the stairs and stand in the queue. I was the third person there that day as I got there nice and early, so luckily I didn’t have any time to wait. Hand over your documents, pay your 1900 baht and then they will give you a number.
Sit in the chairs to the left of the queue and wait for your number to be called. The first time they called, they just gave me my receipt and told me to wait for 40 mins.
I waited patiently, then my number was called.
I checked the dates were correct, headed out the door with my 30 day extension, met my taxi driver and headed back to the Lomprayah pier.
It really is as smooth as that! I left Phangan at 7.20am and arrived back at 11.45am ready to start the day! All in all, this process really does seem like a money making scheme from Thailand and not one where they particularly want to catch you out. They keep it as smooth as possible and the girls in the office are really lovely and welcoming.
Head over to my Instagram below to see more snaps and info on Koh Phangan and my life in Thailand: