The TM30 form is an immigration requirement. The law governing this form aims to ensure transparency in the accommodation details of foreigners staying in Thailand.
It must be completed by the landlord of a property to report the stay of guests within 24 hours of their arrival.
You won't need to worry about this requirement if you are simply coming on holiday to stay in a hotel. Generally this is only relevant to the following people:
- Those staying with a Thai friend
- Those staying in any type of unlicensed (as a hotel) property
- Those who own a home in Thailand (and reside there)
- Those who co-own a home in Thailand (and reside there)
Why Does the TM30 Form Exist?
The form is designed to report non-Thai nationals staying in the country, be it a short-term or long-term residence.
The rules apply to any Thai national housing a foreign national in the Kingdom, but also applies to a foreigner who owns or co-owns a home in Thailand – even if they are the sole occupant.
If you stay in a condo or apartment block, the owner is required to register you.
The TM30 aims to provide effective monitoring, so foreign criminals are less likely to choose Thailand as a place to hide out. The TM30 takes immigration tracking beyond the airport or land border and to the residence of each individual.
The form is also used as a means of providing information on tourism. The number of foreigners staying in the country is tracked, as well as the most popular locations picked by foreign travelers.
The data collected can also be used to identify foreigners who work illegally in the country, as well as those who have overstayed their visas.
While some might feel the rule is an invasion of privacy, it is there to protect the country – despite its lack of proper enforcement over the years.
TM30 Law & Application
The law governing the TM30 form was introduced a long time ago alongside the Hotel Act of 2005, but has since expanded beyond hotels to cover landlords owning properties or units that are not classified as hotels.
This was necessary to include condo rentals and other unlicensed businesses that put up guests, such as those found on the likes of AirBnB. It also covers Thai individuals and families who host foreign nationals.
To reiterate: anyone who offers accommodation needs to comply with the law by reporting any foreign national staying on the property. The report must be completed not only by hotels and serviced apartments but also by landlords of private properties.
It is the landlord’s responsibility to submit the TM30, but if the landlord doesn't then the guest should raise the issue, as it is a legal requirement.
In 10 years I've never been asked for a TM30, but since stories of fines started popping up a couple of years ago, I now ensure that wherever I am stay the owner has reported my residence – except for hotels, of course.
The reason I do this is because I don't want a fine when they see my lack of registration on the computer during a visa renewal.
Who Needs to Be Registered?
If you're staying in a hotel or other business licensed to receive guests then that business will report your stay for you. Indeed, tourists won't even know this reporting has happened.
However, if you are on a long-stay visa and plan on extending (a retirement extension, for example), immigration requires you to have submitted a TM30 within 24 hours of arrival, whether on your behalf by a landlord or yourself as a property owner. So do make sure it is done.
The TM30 is divided into two separate forms. The second form allows the landlord to register multiple people. So if you are staying as part of a group at non-licensed accommodation, your landlord can report you all on the same form.
Some of you might wonder: should I still report myself if I have a yellow house book (tabien baan) or co-own the property I’ll be staying in?
The answer is yes. Even if you own or co-own the house, you must complete the form within 24 hours of arriving at the property – be it online or at immigration.
If you are staying in a friend’s house, your friend still needs to submit the TM30 form. The same applies to any foreigner who is married to a Thai and carries a Thai visa.
Short Stays Away from Home
You might be wondering whether you need to report your residence every time you leave home for a short break and return just a few days later.
This depends on whether or not you return within the period of stay specified on the last TM30 you submitted.
If you return within the period specified on the TM30 then you don't need to submit a new one. If you return after the period specific on the TM30 then you do need to submit a new form.
So if you go to stay with a friend for a few days, you won't need to report when you return home, if, for example, your most recent TM30 specifies that you will be staying in your home property for a further 3 months.
The same rule applies to your landlord, if you are staying in a rented property.
In this instance, your friend is still required to report your stay, as a hotel would. This is because, in accordance with Section 37 (2) of the Thailand Immigration Act of 1979, your latest place of residence must be reported and logged in the immigration database.
Whether or not people actually comply with this rule is a separate issue, and let's face it, most people don't.
Remember, you don't need to worry about reporting if you go to stay at a hotel or guest house because they take care of this for you.
To report your stay, you'll need the following:
- Copy of your passport’s photo page
- Copy of your passport visa page
- Copy of your departure card
The landlord will need:
- Copy of his/her title deed
- Copy of the rental contract
Remember: Each time you visit Thailand a TM30 needs to be filed, because your arrival number will change.
Also note that the TM30 is not the same as 90-day reporting. However, you may be fined if you go to file your 90-day report and a TM30 hasn't been filed since your arrival.
The good news is that neither you (the home owner) or your landlord need to fill out a form or go down to an immigration office. You can report online, when it works, that is!
Most hotels and registered businesses use TM30 online reporting.
Online registration is available here.
You need to first request a username and password, and then log on to register.
What Happens If I Fail to Register?
Whether Thai or foreign landlord living in Thailand, make sure to register new guests within 24 hours.
Even if a guest leaves and then returns a month later, you need to report this again.
The fine for not reporting is 1,600 Baht per person.
As a tenant or guest, you should ask your landlord if you have already been reported. If your landlord is not willing to report you, then you can try moving to another place or you can report yourself on his/her behalf. That being said, to report yourself you need the aforementioned documents from your landlord.
There are cases when long-term tenants find out that they haven’t been reported by their landlords, and these issues often arise at the Immigration department either for a 90-day check-in or visa renewal.
If you’re a foreigner who has been staying in a property for a couple of days, you might want to befriend your landlord and enquire as to whether you have been reported.
TM30 Rules – Q&A Summary
Do I need to register if:
A. I am staying in a hotel?
No. The hotel will do it.
B. I am staying with a friend/ partner?
No you don't, but the person you are staying with needs to register.
C. More than one person is staying at my property?
D. I am living in my own home?
E. I am a co-owner of a home?
F. I left my primary residence and went on holiday in Thailand, then came back again to my primary residence?
It depends if you return to your primary residence within the period of stay specified on the last TM30 you submitted.
If you are staying with a Thai national and the person isn't sure what to do, they can read this TM30 guide in Thai.
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