Whether you have found the perfect Thai partner, or you and your soulmate plan to spend the rest of your lives in the Land of Smiles, getting married in Thailand is quite straightforward. Indeed, marrying a Thai citizen gives you the right to a long-term visa, although that is not enough of a reason to get married.
Thai wedding ceremony
If you are planning to marry a Thai, her family would wish to arrange a traditional Thai wedding ceremony/party at a top wedding hotel in Bangkok, where the traditional act of presenting the dowry and cutting the cake are performed. It should be noted that this is not a legally recognised marriage; you need to register the marriage at one of the Amphur offices, which can be found in every district. There both the groom and bride will receive a marriage certificate and the cost is minimal. As a foreigner, you might need a translator to ensure that you fully understand what’s going on, plus you need translations of Embassy documents to verify you are not married in your home country. You could only have the registration, or have both registration and wedding ceremony, but if only the wedding ceremony, your union is not recognised by Thailand or any other country for that matter.
There are 3 steps to register a marriage in Thailand
- Check that you are eligible to marry in Thailand – The information you need can be found online. Both parties must be over the age of 17 and be of sound mind and of single status; you can register your marriage at any Amphur office; the Bangkok District of Bang Rak is a very popular choice.
- Gathering the paperwork – Foreigners need to provide an ‘affirmation of freedom to marry’, which can be obtained from your embassy in Bangkok. If you have previously married, you will need to show evidence of a divorce. A Thai national must show their ID card and house registration book; if previously married, a copy of the divorce agreement needs to be shown. Here are a few good reasons to live by the beach.
- Registering the marriage – This can be done at any of the Amphur local government offices and you need to produce the required documents and bring two witnesses. If you wish for the marriage to be recognised in your home country, you need to register the marriage at your embassy. The cost for the registration is minimal and a record of the union is stored at the Amphur and you and your partner each receive a stamped version of the marriage certificate.
Once the marriage has been formally registered, you and your group can head off to the wedding reception at the hotel of your choosing and you will see the traditional side of a Thai wedding celebration and then it is off to Phuket for a memorable honeymoon. If you are planning your trip to Thailand, check on the current entry requirements, which can change without notice.
We hope the above information helps you to prepare for your Thai wedding and an online search will help you find a good hotel that specialises in wedding parties.