The general public transportation system is unreliable in many aspects of Thailand. Having a car is essential for a lot of Thais and expats who live here. Sure Bangkok has got the BTS and MRT. And a lot major cities and towns use a van network and native buses or songthaews. However, these don’t serve the needs of everyone. I won’t reason that the BTS and MRT are excellent systems, but they’re inadequate for the requirements of the city. And they’re only suited to those located in the central zone. Many expats reside in areas including Chonburi, Phuket and Chiang Mai, where subway lines and sky trains are still a distant dream.
Sweating in the bus, risking safety in the public van, and waiting on unscheduled buses means that many individuals elect to invest in a car, in particular those living beyond Bangkok. The caliber of life and freedom that owning buy car in thailand will give you makes a huge difference. Imagine traveling with a bus or even in a taxi using a baby or praying to some higher power that the van driver can get you to your destination safely.
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How to begin
After I bought my first car I had millions of questions. I wasn’t “into” cars and didn’t know much about the industry and how things worked. A lot of people go to their dads for car advice, thus i went along to mine. I used to be lucky because my father worked in the vehicle industry for over 25 years and he provided me with lots of advice. I bought an auto I found myself content with. However, here in Thailand things work differently. So I used the advice from my dad and also from a couple of great local sources: Damien Kerneis, Co-Founding father of SiamCarDeal, and Wasawad Wasuthasawat, Country Manager at Carsome.co.th.
In addition, i used plenty of online sources and through this short article I gives you quotes, figures, and links to useful sites that will help you get a car in Thailand.
Why Invest in a Car?
Location influences your need to get a car. I’m unclear a lot of people residing in Central Bangkok could justify using a car since there is good public transport. There’s also lots of traffic which could make driving a nightmare.
If you wish to travel outside of the downtown area for business, it becomes essential to get private transportation. Having a car may appear beneficial to weekend trips outside the big city, but you must think about how many times you might utilize the car and if it might increase your total well being.
When you have chose to purchase a car, your local area may help determine what kind of car would best meet your needs. Should you travel long distances from the rural area a larger car for cruising around will make sense. Living inside the city, choosing a small compact car to make traversing through traffic easier is definitely the better option. You might keep to the Thai trend and get an enormous pickup truck, regardless of where you reside.
Pickup truck is really a # 1 option for many Thai families.
Lasting vs Short Term
A key factor for most expats to take into consideration is whether or not they will be staying in the country for some time- or short-length of time.
Long-term expats get more reason to get an automobile as it is a tremendous financial investment in Thailand. Those married, here on retirement visas, or those with full time jobs who stay for the long term could benefit from using a car.
Those here for a short moment should think about the resale price of their car and how easy it’ll be to promote. As you’ll see there is a substantial amount of paperwork involved when selling an automobile. For anyone here for a brief time, it will not be your best option. You also need to take into consideration that if you must leave Thailand on a certain date the vehicle should be sold by then which may cause problems should you be rushing to locate a buyer.
There exists always the choice of leasing an automobile for a period of several months to a year or relying on local public transport and taxis. I wouldn’t invest in a car in the event you aren’t gonna be in Thailand for more than a year-if you do not live in a rural area.
If you’re trying to find a brand which holds it value then your best choice can be a Honda or Toyota or maybe the top models from Japanese car makers.
One common reason behind investing in a car in Thailand is designed for once you have a family group and don’t want to depend upon public transit. I wouldn’t wish to require a baby on a bus or maybe in a taxi. I feel it might be irresponsible as well as a car is definitely the safest approach to transport your family members in case you are unattainable of your MRT and BTS in Bangkok.
Parents.com have listed their top cars released in 2016 for families. This list is definitely worth a peek since many models can be bought in Thailand.
New Cars vs Used Cars
One of the primary choices you’ll must make is whether you wish to get a used or new car. There are advantages and drawbacks to both. A lot of people would rather buy new due to the lower maintenance costs and frequent deals. But additionally there is a thriving second hand car market in Thailand. And the potential of buying from other expats in Thailand means you can go through most of the process in English.
Once you get a new car, there are a number of advantages. You can get a lot of extras thrown in should you be great at negotiating. Within Thailand, most dealers seem to sell with the recommended list prices however the extras are where you could make an effort to get added value. It’s normal to have the first year’s insurance covered or tinted windows, for instance.
If you pick new, you’ll have reassurance knowing you happen to be first owner in the car, so there shouldn’t be any surprises later on. Getting a new car does mean you possess more finance options accessible to you, and you’ll have the opportunity to communicate on the dealership about your personal situation.
During my research with this article, people claimed that the dealership where they bought their car also offered them better part-exchanges on new car purchases. Your relationship involving the customer and dealer allows expats to ask more questions with all the experts before, during, and after the shopping process. As you’ll see below the shopping process isn’t easy but through the use of an authorized dealer you’ll be coping with salespeople that have experience negotiating with expats.
The most important good thing about a pre-owned car is that you simply obtain a cheaper list of wheels. There is a prospect of a great deal in Thailand, nevertheless in general used cars hold their value well and price a lot more than you will pay in western countries.
There is also the choice to purchase a second hand car from a licensed dealer which implies you’ll better the likelihood of obtaining a service package or insurance. Used cars can be obtained from numerous sources and some of them provide you with the cheapest prices in the marketplace.
One negative for used cars is the 7% VAT that’s put into the bill if you pick coming from a showroom or second hand car dealer, or make use of a loan to finance the investment. To avoid this payment you can aquire in cash from a private seller. Buying from a private seller having looked after their car is a superb option. Thai people call these “house cars.”
Exploring the roads of Thailand I saw two trends. The very first was the number of pickup trucks and the second was the buzz of Honda and Toyota cars.
From the UK where roads are full of Fords and Renaults, I put the number of Hondas and Toyotas to the Thai passion for Japanese products. But I soon discovered other reasons for his or her popularity. Honda and Toyota are two of the vehicle brands that happen to be created in Thailand and possess lower taxes and selling prices than imports. Tax can also be the reason behind the great number of pickup trucks. These cars have got a reduced excise tax, leading them to be a popular choice for many individuals.
One other reason for the rise in popularity of those two brands may be the accessibility to certified mechanics. Every town can have a garage to repair these cars and also the parts are really easy to come across. Even third-party garages is going to be knowledgeable of top-brand cars.
Wasawad Wasuthasawat said, “black and white” were two of the most popular colors for cars and would have been a good choice had you been planning to sell your automobile after several years.
Irrespective of the model, black are white are two most in-demand colors in Thailand.
Researching shows Toyota, Honda, Isuzu, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Nissan, Suzuki, Ford, Chevrolet, and MG are created in Thailand and therefore are priced a lot better than other brands. BMW and Mercedes are assembled in Thailand but use imported parts which make them more pricey than they’d be throughout Europe or maybe in America. Imported finished cars and trucks are subject to a 300% tax, causing them to be three times higher priced compared to Europe or America.
“The Corolla or Altis is one of the best-selling models for the public,” Damien Kerneis said. “It holds its value well and you can actually find spare parts.” As this is the style of most taxis in Bangkok, it goes without proclaiming that these cars are a good selection for those within a strict budget considering getting their particular wheels in Thailand.
There are many different options with regards to purchasing a car, used or new, in Thailand. Traditional dealerships are popular but there is also an ever-growing listing of online alternatives for buying a car.
The dealership was the initial place I visited when purchasing a car in Thailand. I felt reassured by looking at an official dealership and felt I would personally receive better service and much more legal fallback if there were any problems. Additionally, it seemed quicker to get finance via an authorized dealership than counting on alternative methods, that are listed later in this article.
I went into the procedure of buying without having a preference towards brand. My issue was budget. I would desire to have a BMW, but based upon Thailand prices they are not the best value for the investment-and solution of my cost range. Attending a dealership meant I could chose a cheaper brand, examine their whole selection of models, and discuss pricing options. The benefit is there are car dealerships in all the big cities and towns. Within ten kilometers of my condo in Bangkok, as an example, I was able to visit a wide array of car dealerships.
An additional benefit of your dealership is you can see new and used cars and compare costs and conditions. Most official dealerships also have promotions, and give warranties and extras on not only new cars, but used cars too.
You might also need the option to check drive an auto when you have a Thai driving license, a license out of your home country, or even an international license.
Just like many places in Thailand, at dealerships salespeople will treat you based on your appearance. Once I walked in wearing a scruffy T-shirt and shorts I got little attention. However, when I went together with jeans, a collar shirt, and dress shoes I needed salespeople jumping over themselves to help you me. Maybe this was just random luck-or bad customer care at some dealerships-however, there is a correlation in between the two.
The Bangkok International Motor Show is among the most favored places for Thais to purchase a new car. Sales in the 2015 show were expected to be over 40,000 which is actually a lot to the 7-day event. Often discounts are given and then there are wonderful promotions. 2017’s event was held in the Impact Arena about the outskirts of Bangkok right before Songkran.
In the past, the big event is criticized to be a little more about the pretty models, but after the recent Junta takeover everything has been toned down and the cars are taking center stage again.
It is also present with see mini shows in the numerous shopping malls around Thailand. My local mall, Fashion Island, seems to have a minimum of one car company showcasing new models every few weeks. They already have huge signs offering discounts but it is not clear if these are the same deals you’d get in the dealership. One advantage of these events with the mall is the fact there is certainly less pressure to get and also you get the chance to see and sit in the car.
Regenthomecar, an example of an automobile tent in Thailand
One of my Thai friends informed me I really could get a car at the tent which confused me. I googled “car tent” and discovered pictures of tents covering cars. It wasn’t until I found this short article where I found out an automobile tent is really a used-car dealership.
Many cars come with limited warranties and lots of can be bought “as seen” so you need to have a real understanding of cars to get a good buy. Tricks such as winding on the mileage and putting different parts into cars do continue so buyer beware.
Many car tents work jointly with a finance company and a loan can be arranged immediately. It’s best to make a payment and drive the automobile away. It’s not unknown for car tents to alter parts when a customer pays a deposit and returns later to the car. Also, in the event you pay by cash the buying price of the auto might be beyond if financing, since some car tents get commission from handing out loans.
Should you be looking for a car to obtain from point A to point B then looking for bargains with a car tent could be an option.
Car auctions are great fun to observe. The atmosphere is exciting and i also believe it is intriguing to examine the tactics of your bidders trying workout their top price. Getting a car through auction can be something I would be skeptical to try for a variety of reasons though.
The issue is that you must compete against other bidders and might wind up paying more than you’re ready to in the heat of battle. At auctions you’ll have to make quick decisions and might not have a full description from the vehicle or have limited opportunities to inspect it. I wouldn’t invest in a car from auction unless I had full knowledge of the automobile and could inspect the automobile first, ensuring it had been in good order.
However, you are able to sometimes get yourself a bargain at an auction if others aren’t interested in the car you would like. Those with knowledge of cars may be confident they can spot a good deal whenever they see one.
If you’re interested in car auctions, check out Union-Auction and Manheim, which have listings for car auctions in Thai and English. Both sites give pictures and descriptions for the cars available and list fees you should pay.
Manheim gives the following info on fees plus some useful tips on the FAQ page.
A buyers administration fee of 8,560 baht (including VAT 7%) pertains to all lots bought in the financiers vehicle auction and also the salvage vehicle auction. The buyer’s fee for burnt out vehicles is 4,000 baht as well as for motorcycles it’s 1,650 baht. For trucks it’s 12,500 baht. Should you buy a financiers or salvage vehicle using Simulcast, yet another buyer’s fee of 1,420 baht applies. Should you buy a motorcycle using Simulcast, one more buyer’s fee of 250 baht applies. Full payment in cash or bank check is essential by 4pm the working day following the sale. VAT is included unless otherwise indicated. Review site, in auction catalogues, or with cashiers for fees applicable in your vehicle.
The auction is actually a fun, exciting, fast process. So here’s some ideas to help you succeed.
Set yourself a budget
Look at the car you want to buy, for example the documents
Pay by internet bank transfer for the safest way of payment
All cars are sold “as is, where is;” you will find no returns
Look at the terms and conditions
Ensure there is the correct name registered for that auction
Bid clearly and don’t delay until the very last minute.
A brief look on Google shows there are several car auctions in Thailand which means you could possibly find a local independent auction near to you.
Purchasing a car online is becoming more popular nowadays. Many sites have sprung up in Thailand to meet the needs of the desires of Internet shoppers. These web sites cater toward the sales of used cars, but some websites offer sales of new cars, or links to special offers from dealerships.
Additionally, there are many listings on forums and social websites which may match you up with a seller. The term “Buyer Beware” is vital here, because there might be limited recourse in case the buyer purchases a car as seen and ends up being a lemon.
For a good source of online cars in Thailand have a look at these sites:
This site is user friendly and clear. You enter a few simple details about your finances, location, and brand name and you get a selection of results. Aside from the license plate number, you receive everything in English, as well as the lists will give you pictures and make contact with number of the owner. Take into account this site is for people enthusiastic about buying used cars.
The web page is useful if you are searching to obtain a guide price and locate information regarding your nearest dealer. An important selling reason for this page is simply because they list cars for sale in dealerships, both new and used. Consequently it is possible to pick up a bargain from a dealer and not just from a private individual.
The other option for online purchases is to consider sites like kaidee.com and bahtsold.com, which offer secondhand goods including cars. Craiglist even offers a website for used cars in Thailand. Again, buyer beware and recognize that you’re unlikely to have any support from your seller right after the purchase is made.
Once I was going to buy my first car around 20 years ago my father went straight to the newsagents and picked up a copy of Auto Trader magazine. It listed a large number of used cars on the market and was like his bible. You could potentially make a price comparison and specs to view that which was a reasonable price for different models.
Nowadays, a lot of this business has moved online but it’s still possible to find offline car listings here in Thailand. National and local newspapers have car sections with private listings, that are worth a look if you wish to go this route.
One among my colleagues bought up an automobile from a private listing at his condo. The seller had left a flyer and the sale progressed quickly while they lived several rooms from the other person.
Also, many cars from the street have for sale posters or stickers on them. You could even see a for sale brochure for the car you’re trying to find. There’s no exact science to purchasing a car, but fate might bring you for your dream car about the soi you’re walking down.
When you’ve decided to go ahead and make your purchase there is a few hoops to leap through. Depending on how you got the auto is dependent upon the amount of the following you’ll must do. When selecting a new car it’s probable that the dealer will appear after most, if not completely, from the paperwork for you. But when purchasing a second hand car, you’ll have to be more on the job if buying from your private individual.
After discovering the right dealer you have to reserve the auto by paying a deposit, usually 5,000 – ten thousand baht. The real reason for this is that cars in Thailand are generally made to order. You ought to get the receipt after making payment on the deposit, stating everything regarding your new car including: model, color, delivery date, and all of freebies you got in the negotiation. Sometimes, it may take around six months for the car to get delivered to you.
After the car arrives, you need to check the car from bumper to bumper. Be sure you bring it for any test drive and look that all freebies are included. Look at the warranty to the manufacture date, inspection dates, and customer details. Make sure all things are perfect before accepting the vehicle. If you can, bring a vehicle expert along with you. Also, make a note of the engine number to be sure that here is the same car you inspected.
You must receive all documents on that day including vehicle insurance, CPTL, car manual, the temporal red book, and the tax sticker.
New cars need to have special red license plates which is substituted with the state white plates in some months. The price of these temporary ones is approximately 2,500 baht but you may be refunded when you change up to the white plates. Failure to transfer in the red temporary plates to the white official ones could lead to a fine should you be stopped with the police. Lots of people do love to keep red plates on simply to show they may have a fresh car.
You will get you’re official blue ownership book a couple of days after or on a single day you will get the white plates. When you finance the vehicle you’ll obtain a copy in the blue book. The finance company will likely be listed as the owner of the car. The blue book and car will be transferred into the name when the loan pays off.
When driving with red license plates there are some things you should be aware. First, you should always keep your ownership and transfer documents along. In case the police choose to hold you back then you’re prone to pay a fine if you can’t prove ownership. Second, with red plates you will be confined to driving during daylight hours and in the province the automobile is registered to.
All car registration paperwork is managed from the Department of Land Transport. The dealer must do it to suit your needs once all of the following documents are already prepared:
Passport (signed copies of all visa pages and data page)
A signed copy of any work permit or a certificate of residency from the Immigration Bureau or maybe the applicant’s embassy
A valid Thai driving license
If you prefer a specific registration plate number, it may be done 2 months beforehand before your vehicle arrives on the Department of Land Transport. A duplicate of the passport, residential certificate, as well as the car purchase contract are required. Though some car dealerships should certainly accomplish this for any small fee.
Department of Land Transport in Bangkok Area 3
Second Hand Car
Before buying a used car, examine the car’s Blue Book or its copy (in case the car is financed) together with checking the car. The engine number should be the just like what exactly is listed on the blue book. This ensures the car belongs to the seller and prevents unexpected problems including investing in a stolen car. If a seller cannot demonstrate the blue book, it’s easier to take your hard earned money elsewhere.
While the required documents through the buyer are exactly the same as registering a new car, the procedure of purchasing a second hand car may be separated by five common cases.
The initial case is to purchase the auto from a used car dealer like a car tent. Prices tend to be higher than buying from your private seller but they’ll have all the details associated with the car transfer and also keep up with the financial loan.
The second case is to buy from a private seller assuming you possess enough cash. You’ll should handle all the paperwork yourself. A personal seller provides documents such as a signed copy with their ID Card, a signed copy of the house registration, Blue Book, the power of attorney, as well as the transfer of ownership. They allow the buyer complete the whole process once everything is given money for. Or maybe you as well as the seller can arrange a date and check out the Department of Land Transport together to perform the transfer.
The next case is basically that you have enough cash although the car remains to be on finance. It’s recommended that you should go to the finance company with the seller and finished the purchase contract and transaction there. The finance company should be the a person to do the paperwork and send an updated Blue Book with your name within fourteen days.
If you need to finance the vehicle you have to pay a deposit beforehand, normally at 5,000 baht-make sure you sign the deposit contract. The vendor should give you a couple of weeks for creating the financial loan. Once it’s approved, you should get a check issued using the seller’s name. Then, the owner should offer the necessary documents for creating the automobile transfer. You may handle the remainder yourself or perhaps the seller can check out the Department of Land Transport together with you. In the event you can’t get a loan by the due date, the vendor has right to accept the deposit unless it’s negotiated beforehand.
If your car remains on finance and you should get that loan to get the car, the easiest way is to go to the finance company and also have them transfer the money into the name. You could possibly still must pay a percentage for the seller and a processing fee for the finance company though.
The transfer process takes several steps. The initial step is to submit all paperwork and obtain it checked and stamped by an official. During this period, they can ask you to return in certain days should you obtained a car from another province. When all things have been checked, you have to come back and inspect the automobile. The inspection makes sure the automobile matches the facts on the submitted forms and there are hardly any other problems. Finally you will be asked to return to recover plates along with the Blue Book.
When the car is transferred in the same province, everything must be finished within a couple of hours. If it’s transferred to another province, it may need a few days.
For a glance at doing the process yourself go here for your account of registering an auto yourself in Chiang Mai. This report is produced by 4 years ago although the process continues to be the same. The whole dexupky01 inside the article is 940 baht to sign up the car. It took considerable time because the owner bought the automobile from Bangkok and registered the car in Chiang Mai.
The transfer cost is different based on the estimated amount of the sale worth of your automobile. There’s a 105 baht for transferring fee plus a stamp fee of .005 baht from your estimated car price. For example, in the event the car is estimated at 300,000 baht, the total transfer cost could be 1,605 baht (105 (300000 x .005)).
Finally, if you are unable to do it yourself, it is possible to give the strength of attorney to another person to finish the paperwork for you personally.
Used cars registered in a different province will need a brand new pair of plates. The expense of this is around 200-300 baht.
Certainly one of my biggest concerns when purchasing a car was where the money will come from. In spite of the lowest priced models I might still need to borrow to perform the sale.
It’s possible for foreigners to have loans in Thailand to acquire a vehicle but you can find strict restrictions. The foreigner will need to have a checking account with good standing in a local bank. The foreigner demands a work permit or similar showing they’re here lasting. A lot of people stated they have been successful getting a car loan employing a tourist visa, however it appears to take a lot of effort, needs a much higher deposit payment, and is decided upon through the manager each and every place.
For the first car a foreigner buys they will require a Thai guarantor. This is usually a relative or friend but they need to be conscious of the specific situation and what goes on in case the foreigner defaults about the loan. For purchasing all cars thereafter and where loan is via the identical source, a guarantor is just not needed. The exception to needing a guarantor is when the deposit payment is between 50-70%.
The ultimate stipulation in order to get financing is the fact a minimum down payment of around 20% is needed. Sometimes a bank will ask for a higher downpayment when you are new in the united states or have limited funds within your bank. In either case be sure to prepare copies of your own work permit, passport, bank statement, and wage slips before you apply for a loan.
Reuters reported that this rate of loan defaults has become rising because of the poor performance in the Thai economy and increasing household debt. Therefore, the conditions to get a loan are becoming stricter and the bank may request a Thai guarantor based upon your circumstances. One positive is that the banks are able to loan money to foreigners for auto purchases, unlike in relation to financing property. In addition they offer special incentives including % interest introductory offers.