How to Apply for a Thai Non-Immigrant B Visa in KL, Malaysia

If you live in Thailand and currently hold a long-term visa such as a Non-Immigrant O visa for marriage, volunteering, O, OA, or OX for retirement, or ED visa for education, and you are planning to apply for a non-Immigrant B (Non-B) visa to work in Thailand then there is a good chance you will have to leave Thailand to apply for your new visa. 

In theory, you can do this in any country outside of Thailand, but some countries are easier because there is less paperwork, some are cheaper to visit, some are just more fun.

Overall, Kuala Lumpur is a great choice for your Thai visa application for many reasons. 

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Key Takeaways

  • If you need to apply for a Thai visa, the Royal Thai Embassy in KL is a good choice because of the smooth process, affordability, and more.
  • For a Non-B visa, plan your time carefully when canceling your current visa and booking your flight before applying for the visa in KL.
  • You need to book an online appointment to get a visa from the Royal Thai Embassy in KL. You have to book in advance for the day after you arrive in KL or later.
  • It only takes 1 business day in most cases to get a Non-B visa there.
  • I listed all the paperwork required when I applied for the Non-B visa in this article. Still, you should check the exact paperwork you need before flying there.

Why Choose KL for a Visa Run? 

Each country has slightly different paperwork requirements for visa applications.

Here are my main reasons for choosing KL to do my visa application:

  • Less Paperwork: My first choice was Singapore as I have friends there and would be able to visit them and stay at their home, forgoing the need for a hotel. My HR and visa agent looked into it for me, but the conclusion was that there was a lot more paperwork involved for a Singapore application. 
  • Fewer Applicants: I have previously been to Vientiane Laos to apply for an ED visa. I liked visiting the city but the situation is much more hectic and stressful. There were hundreds of applicants, the process took a long time, and I felt quite targeted by freelance agents who try to make money outside the embassy, charging people for paperwork checks and other services. 
  • Smooth Process: The visa process in KL was a breeze. You never feel confused or like you might be in the wrong place. Everything was very clear and fast. Both application and collection of the visa had me in and out of the embassy in mere minutes. 
  • Great City: KL is only a 2-hour flight from Bangkok. The city is very safe, clean, very organised, Grab is super efficient there, and it’s just a fun place to visit. I love the Malaysian food, the super friendly people, not feeling like a tourist target for scams, and that everyone there speaks English. Malaysia, and KL in particular, is a joy. 
  • Affordable: KL is also very affordable. I found hotels to be about half the price of Bangkok accommodation for the same quality. A grab ride 58 km from the airport to Sentral is 65 Ringgit (500 THB). There is also a great bus system; the Red Skybus to/from the airport is only 11 Ringgit (85 THB). Most Grab rides within a few km are 6 to 10 Ringgit. I never worried about being scammed by a driver. 
  • Food: The price of food in KL is very similar to Bangkok. You can eat cheap delicious local meals  for 10-20 Ringgit (80-160 THB). Or you can splurge on all the international cuisine you can dream of for a bit more than that.
  • Good Transportation: The LRT, MRT, Monorail Lines & BRT Subway Lines​ are all integrated as one system called Rapid KL with “MyRapid” passes available at all train stations and major bus and light rail stops. You can even get a 1-3 day unlimited transport “MyCity Pass” for 25 Ringgit for 3 days. 

Steps Overview

Here is the timeline of events for changing your visa to legally work in Thailand.

The fastest you can complete the Non-B process in KL is 3 days AFTER all the paperwork is in order from your employer, not including the work permit stuff that comes later. 

  1. New company prepares paperwork for application
  2. Agent cancels your current visa 
  3. Fly out of Thailand before midnight the day of the cancellation 
  4. Apply for the visa at the Thai Embassy in KL the next day
  5. The day after that, pick up your passport with your new visa
  6. Fly back to Thailand as a Non-B visa holder
  7. Apply for a work permit at the Ministry of Labour

Please note that all of this advice only applies to people who are permitted to apply for a next-day visa. There is a list of 60+ countries including China, many African nations, South Asian, and Middle Eastern countries which can take up to 45 days for the application if you are not a long-term resident of malaysia. Check if you are eligible here

Now learn more details about this process and make sure you have great support from your employer to get you through it. 

Visa Process Estimated Costs

This is not a cheap process. It is best if you negotiate with your employer to have some of these costs covered by your new company in your work contract. 

Of course you can make it cheaper by staying in a hostel, taking buses to and from airports, and only eating microwaved ramen while in KL, but we have provided a budget for someone who wants to have a smooth and pleasant trip and maybe even a bit of fun. 

  • Cancellation of old visa: 2000 THB
  • Return flights to Malaysia: 4000 THB
  • Hotel for 2 nights in KL: 3500 THB 
  • Taxi or Grab fees to and from both airports: 2000 THB 
  • Non-B visa fee: 2500 THB 
  • Spending money in KL: 3000 THB 
  • Medical Check Certificate for Work Permit: 500 THB 
  • Work Permit application 2000 – 5000 THB
  • Total: Up to 22,500 THB.  

Learn more: 

Get Your Paperwork in Order 

If you are applying for a Non-Immigration B Visa for work along with a work permit for Thailand, then that means you have already secured a job and your company is supporting you in this application. 

Your HR person – or the agent your company hires to assist with the process – will help you navigate the very bureaucratic and tedious process of gathering all the correct paperwork for your application. 

It is imperative that a competent and experienced local Thai person is handling this. If there is even the tiniest mistake in your paperwork, then you are in trouble, you will be entering Thailand as a tourist and starting the process all over again. Get it right to avoid expensive mistakes. 

List of paperwork needed for the Royal Thai Embassy in Kuala Lumpur

Here is the most recent list of requirements at the time of writing. 

Required Documents

  • Completed visa application form (download from the website here
  • Original passport with at least 6-months validity and 2 blank visa pages
  • One copy of the passport photo page
  • One recent passport-size photo (3.5 x 4.5 cm) with white or blue background
  • A copy of your work permit in Thailand (if you previously had one) 
  • Letter of approval from the Ministry of Labour of Thailand or Form WP.32 (บต.32)
  • Letter from the Board of Investment of Thailand (BOI) (if applicable) 
  • Job offer letter
  • A copy of your company’s registration and business license with registered capital of at least THB 2 million
  • A copy of your company’s list of shareholders
  • A copy of latest balance sheet, statement of Income Tax and Business Tax (ภ.ง.ด.50 and ภ.พ.30)
  • A copy of the company’s value-added tax (VAT) registration (ภ.พ. 20)

However, before you go there, you still should check the website of the Royal Thai Embassy Kuala Lumpur for more info or email them to ask specific questions: [email protected] 

Other Information: 

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  • The fee for the Non-B visa is RM 320 (2,500 THB) for a single entry visa. You need this exact money in cash only when you submit the application at the embassy. 
  • Even if you write multiple-entry on the form, they will only give you a single entry visa. You can apply for multiple entries in Thailand later. 
  • The fee is exempt for nationals of Malaysia, Singapore, Republic of Korea and Tunisia.
  • This visa is valid for a single entry into Thailand and must be used within 90 days from the issuance date.
  • Upon arrival, you will be granted an initial permit to stay in Thailand for up to 90 days. 
  • Within 90 days after entry into Thailand, you must obtain a work permit from the Department of Employment. Your employer should guide you through that process. 
  • With the work permit, you can apply for an extension of stay up to 1-year with multiple entries from the immigration bureau. 
  • Additional documents may be required as deemed necessary by the Royal Thai Embassy.
  • If they reject the application, the fee is non-refundable. 
  • You need the name, number, and address of a local guarantor in Thailand. It is recommended to take a copy of the ID card of the owner of your company and that person’s information for the application form.

Simultaneously Book: Cancellation – Appointment – Flight 

Now that your paperwork is all in order, you need to start the logistics planning. The timing here is super important, double and triple check your timeline to make sure nothing is overlooked.

The following three things should be booked together. 

Canceling Your Existing Visa

First, ensure the day that your existing visa will be canceled. Everything hinges on this day. 

Your visa agent or HR from the company who provided your previous visa needs to go to immigration (Chaengwattana in Bangkok) to cancel your existing visa. 

You can hire your own agent, but they will need to work with someone. For example, if you are a Non-Imm O spouse, then your husband/wife’s HR person should help. If you are an ED visa holder, then your school’s student liaison should help. 

You can also do this yourself. You need to get specific paperwork from the immigration bureau.

But for about 2000 THB, we feel it’s worth it to pay someone to do this for you to avoid spending the whole day in a government building and navigating that process alone.

The visa holder does not need to be present at immigration for the cancellation.  

Note: After you cancel your visa, you need to leave Thailand that same night. If you need more time, you can pay 1,900 baht and get an extension of stay immediately after you cancel the visa. It gives you 7 to 14 more days in Thailand.

Book Your Appointment in KL

For KL, you must make an appointment with the Thai embassy online. This is a crucial step as it helps the Thai embassy in Kuala Lumpur manage the flow of applicants efficiently, reducing wait times and overcrowding. 

You will get a screenshot confirming your appointment with your ticket number and a QR code. We recommend you print this as you need to show it to get inside the embassy. 

You should make an appointment online for the day after you arrive in KL. The link can be found on the Royal Thai Embassy Kuala Lumpur website or you can click here. Choose your application day and time. You get a half-hour slot between 9:30 am and 12:30pm. I chose 9:30 because I wanted to get out and see the city after dropping off my passport. 

holidays for the Thai embassy in KL
The Royal Thai Embassy in KL government holidays are posted outside the embassy. 

Make sure you know about the public holidays so that your trip doesn’t get delayed because of one. They follow the Thailand government holiday schedule AND the Malaysian holiday schedule. The sign is posted outside the embassy for 2024. 

Book Your Flights 

Knowing that the old visa cancellation process can sometimes take all day, you have to book a flight out of Thailand for that same night. Get the latest flight possible since you can’t rely on the visa cancellation happening before 5pm. 

Note: It is a good idea to buy your return flight as sometimes airport immigration can ask for your flight ticket out of Malaysia. But you might want to book a refundable or flexible flight in case you need to delay your departure. 

Once they have canceled your old visa, you need to get your passport and run to the airport. You must leave Thailand before midnight on the day your visa is canceled. If not, you are technically overstaying, and you will meet issues at immigration at the airport and likely be asked to pay a 500 THB fine. 

No one wants overstays on their record which might affect your ability to stay in Thailand in the future. While it’s not the end of the world, it’s best to avoid this if possible. 

You can book your return flight for the night of the visa collection, which is one day after visa application. Or you can stay in KL a bit longer if you want. 

Quickest Timeline Example: Cancel old visa Monday, fly to KL Monday night. Sleep. Apply for your new visa at the Embassy in KL on Tuesday morning. Sleep. Pick up your new visa Wednesday afternoon at 2:30pm. Leave KL Wednesday night. 

The visa process really does only take one day. Drop-off morning. Pick-up afternoon the following day. Unless there is a problem with your paperwork. Then you will have to start all over again.  

Application Day in Kuala Lumpur

Head to the Royal Thai Embassy in time for your appointment and wait at the front where you will see a sign that says “Consular Section”. Guards will let you inside 10 minutes before your appointment time.  

entrance to the Royal Thai Embassy in KL
It is easy to find the Royal Thai Embassy in Kuala Lumpur. In addition, the consular process is a breeze. 

Royal Thai Embassy, Kuala Lumpur

  • Address: 206, Jln Ampang, Kampung Datuk Keramat, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Phone: +60 3-2148 8222
  • Open Weekdays: 9:30 am to 12:30 pm, and 2:30 pm to 4:30 pm 
  • Map Link. 

Arrive On Time, Not Early

Your appointment time is the time you chose during the online booking process. If your appointment is at 9:30 am, aim to arrive at 9:30 am on the dot. There is no need to get there early. Unlike the suggestions you might find on old out-of-date blogs, arriving early won’t give you any advantage. 

The process has become much more streamlined and user-friendly. An automated system calls applicants by name, not by the order of arrival. Whether you arrive early or exactly on time, you will be called based on your appointment time in the system. 

Royal Thai embassy in KL opening hours
Be on time for your appointment at the Royal Thai Embassy in KL. 

When you arrive at the consulate, there will likely be 20-30 other people with the same appointment time as yours. Do not stress about being first or get mad at queue jumpers.

Simply follow instructions from the guards and wait for your name to be called. The automated system ensures an organized and fair process.

Follow Instructions

Once your name is called, follow the instructions provided by the consulate staff. Have all of your documents in a neat stack, pass them all over. Answer any questions they might have, and pay the visa fee of 320 Ringgit in exact Malaysian cash ONLY. 

The application process really only takes less than a minute. They only do a cursory check of your documents on the spot. If there is something wrong, you might only find out about it the following day when you go to collect your visa. 

It is for this reason, you might want to book changeable or refundable plane tickets. 

You will get a receipt, and you will be told to come back the next day from 2:30pm. 

Collection Day in Kuala Lumpur

Mornings are only for applications, afternoons are only for collections. Be there from 2:30 and definitely before 4:30 to collect your passport with your new Non-B visa safely inside. 

Collections do require a bit of queuing up, there is no name-calling system for this part. But never fear, the process is super fast, line up, give them your receipt, tell them your passport country, and they hand you the passport with a new receipt and you walk away. All done in minutes. 

If there was something wrong with your paperwork, this is when things could go astray. Fingers crossed you won’t have to face any problems though! 

You are all done and can head back to Thailand that night or stay and enjoy Malaysia some more. 

Top Tips for a KL Thai Visa Application Trip 

While we know this trip is strictly business, you can definitely use the opportunity to enjoy a few days in a different country. 

Use Grab 

The same Grab app you use in Thailand will work in KL. This is great news as it is the most common way to navigate the city. The airport train from KLIA to Sentral is 55 Ringgit and a private Grab car is 65 Ringgit. So it really is the preferred option for locals. 

Get a Decent Hotel 

You should choose a hotel walking distance to the embassy to reduce the risk of being late and stressed for your appointments. There are some great bargain options in the area. 

Micasa AllSuite Hotel in KL
You have lots of hotel options in KL but Micasa is close to the Thai Embassy and a great choice!

A personal recommendation is MiCasa All Suite Hotel. This writer had a most wonderful stay there. They have a gorgeous pool, and the rooms are huge, luxurious, and come with a full kitchen.

It was only 1700 THB per night. It was less than a 10-minute walk to the Thai Embassy. It is a short walk to a mini-mall called The Linc which had good dining options and a supermarket. 

Spot to Sit Near the Embassy

If you are early for your appointment and need to kill some time, a short walk from the Thai Embassy in KL is a supermarket called The Food Merchant at Pavilion Embassy. They have a small cafe inside the market and a selection of outdoor coffee shops and food stalls where you can sit, use the wifi, even charge devices. 

Explore Kuala Lumpur 

Since you are there anyway, and your passport is safely with the Thai embassy, you might as well explore the wonderful city of KL and make the most of your trip to this great country. 

Roti in KL
When in Malaysia, one simply MUST eat roti! 

This writer strongly suggests eating unique and magical Malaysian roti. Something that is shockingly hard to find in neighboring Thailand. Nearby the Thai Embassy is the famous Valentine Roti where you can get the classic Roti Chenai for only 2 Ringgit, or the incredible Roti Murtabak Kambing which is stuffed full of tender stewed goat! 

You should also go on a hunt for street art, do some souvenir shopping at Petaling Market, or get your photo taken with the world’s tallest twin structures, the Petronas Twin Towers. 

Other Visas You Can Get in KL

The full list of the types of visa you can apply for is on the embassy website here. Those include tourism visas for maximum 60 days (if you require more than the 30 days you are given if you do not get a visa before entering Thailand), diplomatic and official visas, transit visas, and all of the non-immigrant visas (B, ED, M, O) for long-stay. 

Learn More: 

Now, on to You 

Applying for a non-immigrant B visa for Thailand in Kuala Lumpur has never been easier. By scheduling your appointment online and arriving exactly at your appointed time, you can ensure a smooth and stress-free experience. 

The most important thing is that your new employer is supporting you fully, triple checking all paperwork, and hopefully providing financial support as well. 

Phoebe has traveled throughout Asia for twenty years and spent more than ten years in China. She is an accomplished writer, artist, and photographer. She is now based in Thailand where she spends her time painting, writing, designing, hanging out with fish, and taking photos of stuff.
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