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While planning my trip to Myanmar as part of my summer Himalayan adventure, I ran out of time to apply for the visa in the US prior to departure. What to do? Well, as it turns out, it’s pretty easy to visit the embassy and get a same-day Myanmar visa in Bangkok. And luckily, I had a brief stay in Bangkok planned prior to my arrival. Here’s my experience with the Myanmar visa process at the Bangkok embassy:
The embassy is located just a short walk from the Surasak BTS Skytrain station. When you exit the station, use Exit #3 and walk about 3 blocks along the road keeping the Skytrain tracks on your right. The embassy is just a bit down a street to your left and opens at 9:00am each morning (except Thai and Myanmar holidays). I arrived at 8:20am since I’d heard there were often long lines. There was a short line already and I was the 8th person to get in line. By the time the doors opened at 9am there were at least 40 people in line.
When the doors opened at 9am I queued up in front of the tourist visa window (#4) and presented my completed application (which I’d printed online the day before). I also had to provide a copy of my airline confirmation to justify the express service, two passport photos, a completed work history (part of the application) and a copy of my passport. The person at Window #4 checked to make sure everything was in order, gave me a number and told me to sit down and wait to be called.
Ten minutes later I was called to Window #2 where I surrendered my passport and 1,260 Thai Baht for the express same-day service. I was told to come back at 3:30pm to pick up my passport (pick-up is daily between 3:30pm – 4:30pm). I was out of there by 9:15am and it couldn’t have been easier. The employees were extremely nice, even offering to let me pay part of the fee when I returned for pick-up as they didn’t have change for two 1,000 Baht notes.
I returned at 3:30pm and there was a long line for pick-up. I got in the line for Window #2 for the express pick-up. The line moved quickly and I was out of there again within 15 minutes.
All-in-all, it was an incredibly hassle-free process and much simpler and cheaper than sending my passport off in the States to obtain the visa. Just be sure to check the public holiday calendar to be absolutely certain the date you need to apply isn’t a Thai or Myanmar holiday. Otherwise, it’s a highly recommended way to secure a Myanmar visa in Bangkok on a tight time frame.
And now I’m off to Yangon!