Volunteer Visa

Foreign visitors in Thailand with a short-term visit engaging in volunteer works with local schools, orphanages, and working on religious or Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) missions has to obtain a Thailand Volunteer Visa and a work permit. This is why it is best to discuss with the organization about getting the legal documents to avoid complications.


According to Thai law, any paid or unpaid work carried out in Thailand, regardless of the duration, requires holding the correct visa and a work permit. Therefore, to formally volunteer for a longer period in Thailand, you must apply for a Non-Immigrant O Volunteer Visa. Holders of this type of visa will get a permission to stay in Thailand for a period not exceeding 90 days from the date of arrival in Thailand. Extension of stay can be requested at the Immigration Bureau.


Volunteer Works can be in the form of:

  1. Child care
  2. Teaching
  3. Medical and Healthcare Mission
  4. Wildlife and Natural Conservation
  5. Animal Care
  6. Community Services

It is also an option to obtain a Non-O Visa in your home country before flying to Thailand. You may contact the Thai embassy in your country for their set of requirements, as the required documents may vary.

Required Documents:

For foreigners who are already in Thailand and wishes to apply for a volunteer visa, here is the list of requirements. These have to be submitted more than 15 days before visa expiration:

  • Form TM 86 for foreigners with Tourist or Transit Visa and applies for a change of visa type (from Tourist Visa or Transit Visa to Non-Immigrant Visa); or
  • TM 87 for those who enter Thailand without a visa, but with a permit to stay for a period of 15, 30, or 90 days and apply for non-immigrant visa.
  • Copy of passport pages and departure card (Form TM 6)
  • Recent passport-sized Photo
  • Proof of financial funds and travel itinerary
  • A Letter of request for Visa or Visa Status Alteration from the relevant department and from the organization
  • Set of the organization’s operating license and registration
  • Copy of the Foundation meeting minutes
  • Confirmation letter or invitation letter issued by the NGO or charity organization, stating the duration of stay, and duties
  • In case the applicant will stay longer than 90 days in Thailand, it is a requirement to present an Approval letter issued by the Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare (Form WP3). In order to obtain this, the organization in Thailand must submit the application at the office of Foreign Workers Administration Department of Employment or at the Provincial Employment Office.

All duly registered foundations and Non-Governmental Organizations in Thailand must have all the proper documentations. Therefore, they must be able to give you all the necessary paperworks to support your application. In case the organization cannot provide you with all the supporting papers, you have to think twice. You will then end up working with them without volunteer visa and work permit, which is against the Thai law.