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Import into Thailand (Cars, Motorbikes etc.)

Import into Thailand (Cars, Motorbikes etc.)

While in Thailand, you can import a car, a motorcycle, a boat or any other kind of motor vehicle.

You can import a vehicle temporarily or permanently.

In general, importing vehicles into Thailand is considered quite complicated, although it is still possible for anyone keen to get their car, motorbike or any other vehicle into the country.

Below are other things you should know if you are planning on importing a vehicle into Thailand.


Temporary Importation

Basically, a temporary importation is one that lasts for up to six months.

The benefits of a temporary importation include the ability to avoid payment of taxes and import duty.

Nevertheless, a cash deposit or a bank guarantee that can cover such costs would be necessary in case the six month grace period is exceeded.

However, the six month period may be extended by up to two months, but only under special circumstances such as an accident.


There are several documents required at the time of importation that include a temporary import declaration form, the vehicle’s registration certification and so forth.

However, you do not have to struggle with the entire process yourself, there are agents who can help you handle the entire process and meet all the requirements.


Permanent Importation

You can import your car, motorcycle, or any other vehicle permanently into Thailand.

Alternatively, you can change a temporary importation into a permanent importation by paying the applicable taxes in addition to meeting other requirements.

For anyone to import a vehicle permanently into Thailand, they must have a non-immigrant visa and a work permit that is valid for at least a year.

A number of documents are required during permanent importation of vehicles.

Unlike a temporarily imported vehicle, a vehicle imported permanently into Thailand has to be registered with the authorities.


General Import Requirements

At the time of importation, vehicle accessories such as stereo systems have to be declared to avoid fines or seizure of the vehicle.

The process of importing a car into Thailand can be quite complex, especially for first timers.

Consequently, it is advisable to use an agent, preferably a Thai-speaking agent.

Violating the import requirements can result in heavy fines or the seizure of the vehicle.


The Importation Procedure

At the port at which your car, motorcycle or vehicle enters into Thailand, you or your agent must give the relevant documents to Customs Department.

The Customs Department will then assess the relevant taxes and duties and verify their payment.

The receipt for these taxes and duties, which is issued by the Cashier Division of the Customs Department, should also be submitted, at which point the vehicle will be released by the Customs Department.



Thailand allows both temporary and permanent importation of vehicles. Temporary importation of vehicles covers importations of up to six months.

The period may be extended, but only with valid reasons. Permanent importations require that the imported vehicles be registered with the authorities.

In general, the process of importation can be quite overwhelming, and it is highly advisable that an agent is involved to avoid violations, which can result in heavy fines and even the seizure of the vehicle in question.

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