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BKKBike09

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About BKKBike09

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  1. What a load of old sh#te. Misleading stats cobbled together by an insurance company and regurgitated in a sh#te red top rag as 'news'. The 'danger' is that tourists can come here and do stuff they'd be unable to do back in UK, without consequence, until things go wrong. Want to drink 10 pints and ride a motorbike wearing flip flops and no helmet day after day? Go right ahead. Try doing that in the UK. And let's not forget ...
  2. But then there'd be no room for advertising, so that's not going to work!
  3. ^ as per my post from December 2017 I successfully (but not without hassle) renewed my registration in latter part off last year. However, in February this year I had to get a new passport (old one full) and at the same time changed the blue PR book to the white one, since the blue one was also full. I thought it would simple to update my e-channel registration but turns out something has gone wrong somewhere and now, despite 4 attempts at the airport, 2 visits to CW and 2 to the computer division at Suan Phlu, my registration no longer works and there's no sign of them being able to get it fixed. I've asked several times for my e-channel registration to be erased and the details re-eneterd from scratch, but apparently no-one at CW, Suan Phlu or the airport has the ability to do this ... I've been given various explanations as to why it's not working, none of which have any obvious solution. In fact, a couple of weeks back, after having been told that "it should work now", it transpired that not only does it not work, but now when my passport is scanned by the IO at a manned desk, the record that comes up doesn't properly tally with the passport in some manner, so I'm either pulled off to one side or it takes them 5 minutes to sort it out ... On my last trip back in I was told by an IO that there had been a software change of some sort back in February and that, since then, the e-channel system for foreigners has been very erratic and that it's also affecting some Singaporeans who have registered (since Singaporean tourist visitors are able to register). I've no way of knowing whether this is true (the software change) but the timing makes sense. I refuse to go to the back of the queue seeing as how I re-registered for a further two years only months ago, so I have adopted the approach of trying to use the e-channel each time and then, when it doesn't work, using one of the priority or similar manned desks. It's a monumental PITA.
  4. You can try looking for an auspicious first name online - try searching something like มงคลนาม ตั้งชื่อ and you'll find links to various sites that list numerous first name options depending on what day of the week you were born. Each day of the week has good and bad consonants for use in a name. I just looked for something that vaguely sounded like my first name. For the family name, I ended up sitting in the District Office googling along the same lines on my phone and I guess was just lucky that one of the three choices I picked (the last of the 3 ...) worked. As others have said, if your wife / the amphur or District Office will take care of it all for you, and you don't intend to use the name anyway (I don't), then that would probably be much easier.
  5. Choosing a Thai name - I did this in Bangkok last month. I'd suggest choosing maybe 5 different sets of first name / last name combinations. I went on my own and the official asked where my wife was, not because she was required to be in attendance, but because he asked me if I'd prepared my choices of first name / last name and said that usually the Thai partner would come along to help choose. I must admit I hadn't really given it much thought but had a first name picked out. Thus I had to come up with some possible family names on the spot. Luckily my first name choice was accepted immediately by the computer but 2 of the 3 possible family names were rejected by the system. I've really no idea what the grounds are for deciding whether a first name / last name is acceptable; I could see the computer screen at an angle and the message that came up saying "no dice" was different for each of the two rejected choices. Anyway, got there in the end and then had to go back and pick up the letters a few days later after the District Chief had signed them. It's also a good idea to laminate the wafer thin mint receipt that you got from SB to protect it, because that's your proof of application. The District Office wanted to see it, as did Immigration at CW (my other letter was to ask CW to verify my PR status).
  6. OP - lucky you, in that both the US and Singapore Embassies will certify a marriage certificate. The British Embassy won't do this any longer. I just registered my UK marriage at Wattana in Bangkok and the process of certifying a UK marriage certificate for the khor ror 22 was a real pain, involving the following steps ... 1. Send the original marriage certificate to the FCO Legalisation Department in sunny Milton Keynes (after paying for the legalisation service using a credit card), for them to stick an apostille on the back verifying that the certificate is genuine. The apostille is a separate sheet of paper. The certified document then has to get sent back to you. If you can, have it sent to a friend or family member in the UK because ... 2. The certified certificate then has to be posted or taken in person to the Thai Embassy in London, for them to stamp that the FCO legalisation is genuine. If you go in person note that this isn't a wait and pick up service; it takes a couple of days. The Thai Embassy do accept postal applications from overseas in special circumstances but apparently you need to discuss with them first. Once stamped by embassy, the certificate is then either mailed back to you or you can pick it up in person. I had a pre-existing one-week trip back to UK coming up, so I sent the marriage certificate to FCO from here a few weeks before and it was waiting for me in UK on arrival. But I don't live in London and I couldn't get to London before Thursday that week. I went to Thai embassy on the Thu morning and paid for the docs to be posted back to my UK address by recorded delivery. I was leaving that weekend and assumed they wouldn't be sent back till the following week but luckily they arrived on Sat morning, so I could hand carry back with me. 3. Next step is to have the MFA certify the embassy stamp and the FCO legalisation. This requires both the certificate and the apostille on the back to be translated. Original and translations then have to go to MFA in Chaeng Wattana, which also takes a couple of days. 4. The district office also wanted to keep the original document but, as it was all scanned by them, we were able to get them to take a copy I'd prepared instead. If you don't want to take the risk that the original will be retained, then it's possible to request a copy of your UK marriage certificate from the General Register Office in UK. Of course that's an extra cost and extra time if you want to use that copy to send for FCO to legalise. On the bright side, the official was relaxed and helpful. Whole process took about 45 minutes. We were required to present only tabien baan, Wife ID card and my current passport. I also gave my pink foreigner ID card (I have PR). No copies. We also needed 2 witnesses; one we brought with us and the other was one of the staff in the district office (they'd previously said that if we didn't have witnesses it didn't matter because they'd provide them). I asked if I could have an extra copy of the khor ror 22 and the official said: "Don't worry - we'll give you 3 copies". Total cost prior to district office: I forget but probably around US$ 100 in fees etc Total cost at district office: THB 0 - all done for free.
  7. Not only that, they are stated to have had Por 12 carry permits, which are quite distinct from the general Por 4 license to own a firearm. It's usually very hard, if not impossible, for an 'ordinary' gun owner to get a Por 12 permit. Typically is is restricted to state officials or others involved in law enforcement or similar activities.
  8. BKKBike09

    Cash-strapped Foreign Office puts Bangkok embassy up for sale

    Most people it seems don't understand what an Embassy does. The Consular Services are a small part of the overall mix of trade representation, furtherance of bilateral relations, administration of regional aid programmes etc. However they are a very high-profile part of the mix, hence the common mistake in thinking that provision of services to British citizens in Country X is the main reason for having an embassy in that country. It is not. Thailand is a well-off country compared to most of its neighbours so there is, now, precious little need for any aid programmes, unlike back in, say, the 70s and 80s. Regional aid programmes in places like Nepal and Bangladesh used to be run out of Bangkok but I don't know if that's the case now. The reality is that the importance of Thailand, per se, to UK foreign policy is relatively low. Bangkok is still important from an intelligence perspective but that relationship/the general tenor of UK-Thai bilateral relations isn't predicated on having a large compound in central Bangkok. We're not living in the 1950's when Britain's influence in SE Asia was significant (Malaya, Burma). On a personal level I find it depressing that the Wireless Road compound is going to be sold and then doubtless transformed into another mall, following in the footsteps of the Imperial, Siam InterCon and, shortly, the Dusit. It also irritates me that more and more consular services are being outsourced or, even more inconveniently for expat residents, being brought back to the UK. But that's FCO / UKGOV policy, not the folk in Bangkok making the decisions.
  9. I don't see any 'pretend lawyers' here - just people looking to gather information and share experiences. I'm just about to start my application, having been down to see the SB guys in the latter part of last year. I've been living and working here, on and off (mostly on) since the late 1980s and all I know for sure is that, no matter what the rules say, their practical application can vary from year to year, place to place and for each individual, often for no discernible reason. Just because it says X on a government web site, or a lawyer tells you Y - that doesn't mean that's what will actually happen. As you rightly note "ever case is different", even though it shouldn't be.
  10. BKKBike09

    VW Scirocco: 2nd Hand and 6 months in ...

    A quick update ... 70,000 km on the clock now and still very happy with the car. There've been a few minor issues but I believe these are quite common, namely: 1. Sunroof curtain and roof head liner came unstuck. These can be sorted out by Diamond, around 3,000 or so per item and takes a couple of days (curtain on mine went about a year ago and roof head liner followed last month). 2. An ABS sensor failed. Replaced by Diamond. Forget how much. 3. Petrol filler cap lock failed. Replaced by Diamond. Forget how much. Have to see how things go now that the car is 6+ years old and getting into "things go wrong" territory. The biggest 'problem' is that I really like this car and it's great fun to drive (fast enough but not crazy), and I have no idea what I'd change it for, for the same sort of price 1-1.5 million, that would offer the same combination of looks, performance and relative practicality (it being a genuine 2+2 with usable boot space).
  11. Pleased to be able to report that I have been able to renew my E-Channel permit for a further two years. That said, it took three trips through Immigration at Suvarnabhumi to get it done. There was a glitch in the database that meant records for existing registered users were locked and couldn't be updated; the officers were very helpful but on first two trips out couldn't help. Another friend who is registered and now expired had the same problems. However on third attempt (coming in) they were able to do it with help from a tech, and now it's working as before. It really is one of the best practical benefits that PR holders who are frequent travellers can enjoy. I think I was among the very first to apply for renewal so hopefully the issue has been corrected. I only needed passport and blue book for renewal (again with caveat that passport must have, I think, two years remaining validity).
  12. Yep. It's got nothing to do with FGM. It's all about injecting body fat into labia to create a '3-D pussy' (the literal translation of the Thai for the desired outcome of the procedure). Hence the photo of syringes full of crud. It is misplaced if not defamatory to castigate the establishment in question for FGM. I'd post a link in Thai to one of the news stories out there, but it might be removed by a mod. Just Google the start of the headline and it will bring up the story: สบส.ยันภาพโฆษณา "จิ๋ม 3 มิติ" ขัดศีลธรรม
  13. Interesting that they asked for the No Conviction certificate. When I applied for PR, my application nearly came of the rails because I had an entry on the UK PNC (subsequently, I determined, because I used to have a Firearms Certificate). Immigration were quite exercised by the fact and an officer angrily accused me of trying to hide a criminal past. When I tried to explain that my PNC entry related to a Firearms Certificate, they told me it was not possible, because "in Thailand only police can own guns" (a non sequitur, and also incorrect, as now I not only have PR but also legally own a firearm in my own name). Their advice was: forget about PR, and just go straight to applying for Thai nationality, as that process, bizarrely it seemed to me, did not require the No Conviction certificate. I still find it surprising that it's not listed under the formal requirements.
  14. Yes, thanks as ever for your very thorough and informative replies.
  15. I'm sure you're right and that I'm suffering from "farangyouthinktoomuch-itis" ... However, I've been reading some of the informative TV threads on the whole subject of dual nationality (and thanks to you and Arkady in particular for the many informative posts - this being a good thread https://www.thaivisa.com/forum/topic/883404-is-dual-citizenship-in-thailand-allowed) I also did a bit of quick searching in Thai and came across aJuly 2014 Q&A post on the web board of the Office of International Peoples’ Rights Protection at the Office of the Attorney General (there's a mouthful - let's say OIPRP), in which a Thai bloke marrying a Lao woman asked about dual nationality and mentioned that he’d heard the law was going to change and wouldn’t allow for Thais to hold two nationalities. I’ve cut out the bits about the marriage and the basic gist of what’s left is the OIPRP stated that, as long as the foreign country doesn’t prohibit two nationalities, it is permissible for a Thai to acquire a second nationality and keep the Thai one too. http://www.humanrights.ago.go.th/forum/index.php?topic=6735.0 However, I also see that the Nationality Act BE2508, referenced by OIPRP, also specifically grants the Minister of Interior power to revoke the Thai nationality of anyone who acquires Thai nationality by naturalisation if it appears that “there is evidence to show that he still makes use of his former nationality” – see Article 19 (2). Thai original here: https://mis.dopa.go.th/dopalaw/law_file/603_030320171110929758.03.pdf Translation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0BwNib_gx9zYEaFRnOVpERmYzMTg/view So I guess that it all still comes back down to a) not getting caught using two passports and/or relying upon how a particular official feels if you do get caught?
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