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DIY Easy Visa Run from Bangkok – Kanchanaburi to Burma Myanmar
It’s visa run time! If your visa has run out and you want to stay past the initial 30-day stamp or other tourist type visa in Thailand, you’ll need to make a visa run. From Bangkok the options are almost endless with two international airports at your disposal. To stay on the ground though, a one-day bus trip (plus a few other shorter legs of the journey) will get you the stamp and paperwork that you need.
The Cambodia visa run is popular but a new border option has popped up on the Burma side, which is a shorter journey and, for the moment a quieter, a fairly smooth-going route that you can actually organize cheaply on your own, without a visa run company.
Here’s what we did:
DIY Easy visa run from Bangkok
- Catch the bus from Bangkok victory monument exit 2 (departs every hour): 2 hours to Kanchanaburi (KB)
(There is also a minibus from Koh San Road apparently)
Comfort level: average to low (depending what seat you get in the 13-seater white van)
- From KB take a taxi to border crossing. We paid the same taxi from KB to do the whole run (Kanchanaburi to Thai immigration, then to Burma immigration, back to Thai immigration, back to KB) at 1100 baht.
Sequence of events & cost:
- Bus to Kanchanaburi (mini bus): 120 baht
- Taxi to Thai immigration (and through to Burma immigration if agreed in advance): approx 1100 baht, round trip
- Start visa process at Thai immigration – register at Thai office, fill out new arrival departure card: - pay 900 baht visa fee (used to be 700 but now changed)
- Exit Thailand on foot – make a stop at the next window at the border crossing – old departure card will be removed and passport departure stamped
- Travel to Burma border – a 4km, dirt road, unassuming building with no immediately visible sign when approaching (same taxi from KB)
- Hand over passports for processing (they take copies and produce a doc for their records- on the slowest printer ever!), then Burma stamps received
- Take a token photo with the Burma flag: priceless
- Travel back to Thai immigration
- Hand over passport for visa processing again at Thai immigration (opposite side of the road to entry point). Receive stamps dated depending on your visa type – know how much time you’re supposed to get & check if stamped correctly
- Enter Thailand on foot, then hand over passport again at the opposite side of the road where you originally began the visa process, for arrival immigration (they will take arrival card that you filled out on the way in)
- Grab a Thai iced milk tea (one of the tastiest I’ve had): 30 baht
- Travel back to KB (with the taxi/song thaew you came with)
- From KB, grab a minibus or coach back to Bangkok (victory monument or koh San rd): 110 baht (for Victory Monument)
Timing: We left around 8am from Victory Monument and returned around 5pm
Cost: 1680 baht per person for two people (without optional extras, with organizing the taxi from KB to do full visa run)
Other options: From Kanchanaburi there are “visa run” taxi services you can hire to pay one price – approx 1800 per person. You still need to get to KB.
Conclusion: It was much more quick and painless, as well as less busy and hectic, than the other visa run we did from Phuket to Burma.