The other day, my passport visa stamp was going to expire so I needed to go to the Aranyaprathet-Poipet border in order to re-enter Thailand. Only, I was surprised by a policy shared to me at the immigration counter in Cambodia. They asked for 200 Baht since I was going to leave the country (Cambodia) on the same day.
I have a flight next week so the most logical thing to do was have a visa run to refresh the number of days for me to stay in Bangkok.
From Hua Lamphong station, I hopped on the same ordinary train since this was the cheapest option available. I only paid 48 baht to get to the Aranyaprathet border. I didn’t sleep the night before so the 6-hour ride went by quickly. This is usually one of my techniques whenever I hop on long bus or train rides which makes 12 or 18-hour travels a breeze. Of course, just make sure your belongings are secure. I couldn’t tell how many passengers sat beside me cause whenever I’d open my eyes, I had a different seatmate every time. But then, I’d just doze off again because of not having enough rest the previous night.
train ride from Bangkok to Aranyaprathet – 48 Baht for 6 hours
200 Baht Policy in Poipet Border?
Everything was normal and I exited Thailand with no hassle. I entered Cambodia and then exited again. I was informed of the policy by the immigration officer in Poipet, Cambodia that I had to pay 200 Baht since I wasn’t going to stay there. This was really strange and it made me wonder if he was trying to rip me off by extorting money. This was their “policy” which doesn’t make sense.
Since I didn’t want to get into an argument, I gave in; but I still haggled. I told them I only had 150 Baht with me and my money was only enough for the remaining days before my flight. After a brief pause, the immigration officer agreed with the price.
I was a little upset but I thought that he couldn’t get away with my money that easily. What did I do? I gave him 150 Baht alright; but mostly in coins. His face turned into a sheepish grin while accepting the coins from me. Good luck with him hiding the cash.
Immigration counter in Poipet border
I’m not sure if this is really a new policy in Cambodia; that if you’re not going to stay for a day there, you have to pay extra money. They even justified that instead of paying for a hostel to spend the night there, I could simply pay them so I could go home on the same day. To think that they did NOT issue a receipt. Anyway, I hope I won’t be doing any visa runs in this border anytime soon. I love Siem Reap, evident with the number of articles I’ve written about the place. I just hope that if this is the rule, then they’d post something for people to see.
Respiratory Disease in Cambodia
On a side note, I had to cover my face when approaching Cambodia due to a recent news that a respiratory disease has sprouted in the country. 61 children died because of the unknown disease and I didn’t want to be complacent even if it originated in the capital city of Phnom Penh.
Call me paranoid but it’s better to be safe than sorry. Good thing I had my headware with me.
heading to the border
So I’m in Bangkok for a few more days and I’ll be travelling again. I’m probably going to write a summary of a month’s stay in this city. It’s already the rainy season, but I’m hoping to experience the sun and the sand this end of month.
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soloflightEd.com is a travel blog by Edcel Suyo. He enjoys performing headstands and crazy stunts during his trips in the Philippines, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Now based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and working to earn a living, he takes time to enjoy the city and travel during weekends.
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Your 200 baht fee at the border is nothing new, other than the fact that it used to be $20US … for many, many years now. The officer has no need to hide anything that is the official policy! You got off cheap considering you visited the country with an intent to spend money in the first place. You can avoid the direct fee by using any of the many visa agents who greetly speed up the process and eliminate any need for you to interface with the authorities:-)
Hi Roger, there’s no need to pay additional fees since I come from a country where we are exempt to get one (we’re part of the ASEAN group). we are given 21 days if we travel to Cambodia. 🙂 I did not go to Cambodia to spend money but just to come back to Thailand since I had a flight to catch and my visa expired. As for official policy or not, my friend was able to do the same border run twice and she was not advised to pay anything. There’s no need to pay when you are trying to EXIT a country. I would understand it if I had to pay fees in the BKK border when I entered on the same day. But not in Cambodia. 🙂
its official policy in Cambodia once you enter there you have to stay atleast 1 day.. my friends did that from Vietnam using the Moc Bai border and he was allowed to re enter Vietnam the following day..
@Alpaje75: thanks for the info, probably they just set it up since previously, my friend could freely do a visa run. thanks for the update!