I’m headed to Myanmar tomorrow and I have to say the whole process of obtaining a Visa wasn’t simple by any means. The country, once shut off to the world, has seen an influx of visitors wanting to experience something untouched. Predictably, crowds at the embassy were large and everyone seemed a little on edge, not really knowing how the process worked or knowing anyone who had done it before that could give them reliable advice. Here is what I learned after going through the process myself.
Locating the Embassy
Finding the Embassy shouldn’t be too difficult. Searching Google maps for “myanmar embassy bankok thailand” shows you the correct location although the address is incorrect. The easiest way is to take the Skytrain to either the Chong Nonsi or Surasak BTS stations. I was staying in a hostel nearby the Chong Nonsi Station. From there I walked around the corner, following the Skytrain tracks, and onto Thanon Sathon Nuea. About 5 minutes more walking and it will be on your right. Turn down the side street and the entrance will be on your right hand side. Most likely, you’ll see a queue of people. If you get lost, ask a motorbike taxi which direction. They all knew where it was.
Unfortunately, there is no Skytrain station near Khao San Road. A cab from there will run you at least 150 baht.
The Myanmar embassy is open weekdays 9am-noon, but also try to avoid Thai and Burmese holidays as I inevitably arrived on Labor Day on my first attempt. You’ll need your passport, 2 color passport photos and a copy of your passport. If you don’t have these beforehand, you can get them just down the same street the embassy entrance is on, about a 100 meters down. You can also get the forms you need there for a small fee or print them out and fill them in beforehand (PDF). Photos are 150 baht, forms 5 baht and copies 3 baht. If you’re doing a same day pickup, you’ll also need your flight itinerary printed out, but otherwise it’s unnecessary.
I was advised to arrive by 8 to avoid the queue, which I did, but I’m not sure I’d do it the same the next time around. Afterwards I talked with a guy in need of a same day Visa who showed up at 11 to no line and was in and out very quickly. In comparison, I showed up at 8:15, waited until they opened at 9 and then waited longer in the queue, not finishing up until 10. It was a long morning. If the Myanmar Embassy is not capping the number of Visas it’s issuing on a daily basis, than I’d suggest showing up later in the day and actually avoiding the early rush.
Getting the Visa
Prices are 1260 baht for same day pickup, 1035 for next day, and 810 for two day. Pickup is between 3:30 and 4:30 on whichever day you specified and doesn’t take long at all. A guy I met in line said that if I had to catch a flight at 7 I’d be fine, although I do not recommend cutting it that close.