13 October 2017

Travel to Thailand - Guide to get a VISA for a Motswana

12:14
Travelling is therapeutic, the joy it brings to the soul is impeccable. However, It can also be a pain­ if it is not well planned. Don’t get me wrong, spontaneous trips are great too but there is some little planning in between that little time you have to be on the move. Planning is necessary for greater adventures, know a little bit about the place you are headed to beforehand, it comes in handy to get your travel time’s worth.

On this segment, I am going to give a Motswana out there, who might be interested in holidaying in Thailand, some TIPS on how to go about acquiring and preparing all the documents needed. I have shared a lot about my Thailand experience in a couple of posts, you can have a read of some here:
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Of course there are a few things that one needs to prepare before Jetting out on a vacation to Thailand. Here is a list of things that you need and how to get them.
1. Of course you need to have your PASSPORT ready as you’ll be leaving the country, it has to at least be valid for 6 months with at least 6 pages left on it to apply for a visa. Yes, citizen of Botswana do need a visa to travel to Thailand.

2. After getting your passport ready, make sure you book your RETURN FLIGHT TICKET or else you won’t be able to get the VISA or if you get it, you might not be able to enter the Kingdom. The bookings can be done with any travel agents around the country, most of them do know how things go, walk in and tell them that you need flight bookings on particular dates to get your visa done.

3. Book a place to stay, it is very important, 1. You will have to fill up a form before arrival with the address of where you are going to stay 2. You might be asked at the airport in Thailand to present your accommodation bookings. There are a few trusted sites that people book accommodation from - AirBnB, bookings.com, agoda.com Hostelworld (for budget travelers), just to mention a few.

4. Make sure you have at least 600USD, approximately BW6,000, cash in hand (carry dollars, pounds or Euro) to present at the airport, the immigration department at the airport might ask you to show some cash as proof that you'll be able to take care of yourself if ever something happens to you during your stay.

HOW & WHERE CAN I GET THE VISA?
Thailand visa is not a hassle to get, especially if you are still in Botswana, the visa can be done in South Africa, there is a Thai Embassy in Pretoria, visit their website and email them to get the requirements, they are very efficient. The last time I checked the basic requirements were as follows:

1)    TWO completed and signed visa application forms. 
(Please note: A separate form is required for each passport holder, regardless of age.  The application form MUST be signed by the APPLICANT personally, unless applicant is a minor.)
2)    The applicant’s PASSPORT (which should be valid for at least SIX MONTHS from the date of application)
3)    As well as a COPY of passport
4)    Certified copy of your I.D. document (besides passport – ID card; driver’s license, etc.)
5)    2x  colour passport PHOTOS  (recently taken)
6)    Travel details document (one of the following: photocopy of return air ticket / return flight booking / return flight reservation / return flight itinerary)
7)    Bank statement, recent 3 month statement, with a balance equivalent to 20,000 Baht (approximately 7,000 Rand or $700 US) per person, or 40,000 Baht (approximately 13,500 Rand or $1,500 US) per family, PLEASE NOTE, if travelling more than 60 days, more funds must be available.
8)    Employment confirmation letter (& certified copy of ID of person who signs letter) for employment in your country of residence
Or:  Business Registration Certificate (CC, etc. if self-employed)
Or: Letter confirming you are a student / unemployed
9)    Deposit slip for visa fee 

You can actually get your visa without leaving Botswana to South Africa, DHL services are well knowledgeable with the arrangement, everyone I have recommended and helped to get visa have never complained about their services, give them a call to enquire.

Payment for visa processing; An easier and stress free option is the use of an EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) with your trusted bank. It will take at least 2 days for them to receive the money, during that time just send a copy of the EFT along with the required documents via DHL, by the time they start processing your visa the money will be in their account.
Another option is to go to the nearest South African city/town, make a cash deposit, go back to Botswana and send your stuff via DHL or visit Pretoria and do it yourself.

5. Wait for at least a week after you have submitted everything required from you through DHL, you will get a call from DHL to collect your passport when the visa is ready. Moreover, give your email more attention in case they might require something from you as they will communicate with you via it.

Where to go to in Thailand?
Depending on what you like, there are a lot of choices for travels, but I have realised that people are more into the BEACH holidays which in my opinion as a young Motswana it is WORTH it. Coming from a landlocked country a beach is to die for, it’s something we aren’t used to, unless you are the special one.

On my next segment I will share of some places to visit in Thailand.

See you next time. Leave any questions in the comment section I’ll get back to you. You slide into my DMs or inboxes on my social media platforms.

Cheers

Signing out
 Mr Orsen Pepe
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Twitter @Mr_Orsen 
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7 October 2017

Hey Orsen! Where Are You? What Are You Doing?

13:21
24th September 2017 marked 3 years since I quit my job as a banker in Botswana and I’ve never been happier in life. I’ve shared about it in more detail 2 years ago when I started this blog à

I’m now back in Asia, my first ever visit was in 2007, then I  was a student in Malaysia, everything was easy as it was all handled by my sponsor, now I am on my own and it a LOT OF WORK. And of course people are asking questions on how I managed to comeback to ASIA (I wonder if those who never went home get the questions as well) Gazillion questions like:

Where are you? What are you doing there? How did you get there? How does it feel to be a minority there? What do I need to be there? Is it safe? Aren’t those people racist? Is it easy to get a job?

Questions? Questions? Questions?

Honestly, sometimes it doesn’t bother me and I don’t blame them, I would ask too. So, Finally, here I are, addressing all of them and feeding all the critics and those sneaky bastard as to where I am and of course part of what I do, come on, you can’t serve a strangers your best wines unless you have a much finer one brewing in the cellar. I swear this will always be my go to post if someone throws one of those questions, I don’t know how many times I had to answer them but today is the last time.

Towards the end of 2014, I packed my bags and flew to Thailand, see why I keep saying it’s good to be single? I had no worries about a single thing when I packed my bags besides my family of course, it wasn’t like the first time I left them I came back before, nope gake moeriko (I’m not a prodigal son).

Thailand, touched based. The first few months of course I indulged in everything that is Thailand touristy. It was during my excursions that I met expats who lived in Thailand and guess what they were doing? TEACHING

I dug deep to understand the hype, NOPE I had no desire to go back home yet.
1. I had no job to go back to 2. I had sold everything back home.
January 2015, the journey began, all of what is to become what I am now. All came at a price, being it money, sacrifices, emotional hurt, struggles, you name it, shit that a true hustler goes through, ask one, they will break it down for you.

So I enrolled into a TEFL course, YES, being an ESL teacher in Asia is like THE WAY OF THE BOSSES, quite a lucrative and easiest job to get (well, not as easy when you are a shade darker, but it’s easier than the other industries.) Imagine a Financial Risk Management Banking & Finance Graduate with 3 years’ experience in Accounting studying to become an English teacher, Hahaha Unbelievable right? Well it happened, 2 years 10 months later I am still in ASIA as both an Online and in classroom ESL teacher.

Was it easy? Definitely not!! It wasn’t and still isn’t. Being black with an African passport is never easy out of the African soil. Your worth is judged based on the shade of your skin and worse by the passport you hold, ESL employers here don’t really give a rat shit if you are qualified or not, yep that is the shit we deal with all the time.

Is it easy to get a job? I still reference to the point above, the shade of my skin, so you can do the math. One has to work EXTRA hard to get a proper job or settle and be exploited. I have had my fair share so did some of my African friends here, well there are some who really got lucky.

Is it safe? Play by the rules, don’t fuck up then you are safe. As compared to Malaysia, Hell yeah it is, I can walk to a convenient store without any fear, I got robbed more times in Malaysia than I did in Botswana and none in Thailand.

Why Am I still here? Listen, despite all the setbacks, I must say this place makes one work beyond their capabilities, there is something about the air that makes you want to do more and push yourself beyond your imagination, you go far beyond your comfort zone. There are a lot of opportunities, you just have to be VERY hungry, aggressive, resilient and smart.


I have never in my wildest dream thought I would one day be a teacher, I guess sometimes we can never run away from destiny (well, whatever it is). I feel very much free and enjoy the ride. Yes, had I known, I could have done this sooner, but nope!! I guess the timing wasn't right.

To get where I am now, my friends and family can attest that I had to go through shit, A WHOLE LOT OF SHIT it wasn't fun but I am very grateful because that has laid down a foundation of what I believe is to be great. I am very excited for the future, where am I headed next? I don’t know yet, but wherever the wind blows and it feels right I am in.

Take a chance in life that ONE CHANCE might be the GREATEST decision you've ever made in your life.


Signing out
 Mr Orsen Pepe
Facebook NESRO
Twitter @Mr_Orsen 
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It'sNesro

A blog by an African Born and bred in Botswana, a peaceful country in the Southern part of Africa. I am somewhere wandering the continent of Asia.




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