Importing a car
I understand that an expat with a one-year visa and a work permit is entitled to import a car into Thailand. But what happens should the work permit expire? Can the expat sell the car? Can the Thai wife of a foreigner buy a used car in England and ship it here? Is the duty to be paid based on the value of the car in Thailand, or its value in England?
Asked on Monday, February 2, 2004 | 03:42 PM
Having a work permit has no bearing on a foreigner’s right to import vehicles. Foreigners can import cars, subject to customs regulations and import duty based on the value of the car as determined by the Customs Department of Thailand. The Thai wife of a foreigner may also import a car from England, but she, too, must comply with Customs regulations and pay import duty. For more information about Customs requirements for importing vehicles to Thailand, see http://www.customs.go.th/Customs-Eng/CargoClearance/CargoClearance.jsp?menuNme=Cargo
Cars imported for use in Thailand must be registered at the Transportation Office nearest to where the car entered the country. For a foreigner to have an imported car registered in his name, the foreigner must bring his passport, a letter from an Immigration office verifying his address, all documents from the Customs Office verifying that the car has been imported legally, and the car itself for a safety inspection. For a Thai, instead of bringing his passport and a letter from an Immigration office verifying his address, he must bring his ID card and his house registration paper (tabien baan). Once the vehicle is registered in a person’s name, that person has the right to sell and to transfer the ownership of the car to any other person.