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AirBnB illegal in Thailand?

Just noticed a sign in my condo that letting out a room for a short term period is illegal.

What's the actual law about this?

Just curious as I have friends who visit Thailand who may not know this and use AirBnB

Appreciate any advice. Thank you

Temporary accommodation for short-term rent for less than one month is considered hotel business and building must registered as hotel and have hotel license.

http://www.tilleke.com/resources/operat … s-building

Condos and villages may also have special internal rules and regulations, which prohibit a «hotel business», which AirBnB actually is (see comment from Straydog).

Even with a hotel license, the other condo owners must agree.

Actually the hotel has a provides some exceptions in this case...

Hotel Act

The Hotel Act (2008) requires any place that provides accommodation for less than a period of one month in exchange for payment is defined as a “Hotel”, regulated by the Hotel Act, and requires a hotel license.

There is a limited exception to this. A license is not required if:

1) the said place has less than five rooms; and

2) cannot accommodate over 20 guests at a time; and

3) the income being earned for such is merely “additional income”.

However, even in this case the owner must report such accommodation activity to the relevant local authorities.

Anyone who operates a “Hotel” without a license is liable to:

a) a fine of up to B20,000; plus

b) a fine of up to B10,000 per day of such illicit operation; and

c) imprisonment of up to one year (in the case of a company, the person subject to such imprisonment would be the director).

Provided that there is nothing in the condominium's Juristic Housing Person legislation (which can vary), that expressly prohibits short term rental of less then 30 days, then provided that you report the accommodation activity to the relevant authorities. i.e Immigration in the case of a foreign guest, tax authorities if the income is taxable, etc. Then you would not be breaking any laws.

That is correct, all potential Airbnb hosts would need to refer to the individual condominiums Juristic Housing Person Rules and Regulations. Most condos have a handbook with all the rules and regs. It would also be worth referring to the Condominium Act. B.E. 2522 and all subsequent amendments.

With regards to housing village (projects) they are covered by the Land Allocation Act. B.E. 2543 and also the individual village's Juristic Housing Person Rules & Regulations. Most villages have a handbook with all the rules and regs

The condo act and land allocation act are similar but not the same.

Hope that the info is useful folks!

Tuenchai (Consultant to foreign clients - Libra Law Pattaya)

thanks for all the kind replies

It's not illegal but some of condominium juristic person set the rule that is not allowed the unit owners open their room for AirBnB. Including mine.

same as my condo, that's why i am asking. Thank you for your kind reply

Would be interesting where to get exact information about this. Laguna Beach Resort 1 has so many short time rentals, 1-3 weeks, that in the main tourist season it is really not nice here anymore ( i am owner of a Condo), it is noisy and overcrowded,.......so where to get information if the short time rentals are legal or not ?

a friend of mine spend holiday here in december, he had no notification of residence at the immigraton,....so my question about the rentals !

My advice would be to refer to what is written in the Rules & Regulations of your Condominium's Juristic Person. If there is a specific rule that states short term rentals are prohibited, then the rule can be enforced by the Condominium's Juristic Committee and Juristic Person Manager.

If no such rule exists and the owner's renting are not in violation of the Hotel Act, which actually has some provision for owners renting for periods under 30 days and not requiring a hotel permit, then there may be little that you can do in the short term.

However, if you feel strongly about this issue then you need to contact other owners who feel the same way, get together and contact the Juristic Committee and Juristic Manager. All Condominium Juristic Persons must have at least one General Meeting per year. Find out when that meeting is, and make sure that your group attend and motion & second for a vote at the meeting, to change the rules concerning short term rentals. What is required to make a new rule, or change a rule, will again be written in the  Rules & Regulations of your Condominium's Juristic Person.

If your Condominiums AGM is too far into the future, then check the rules and regulations to see how many owners are required to be able to legally ask the Juristic Committee to call an Extra Ordinary General Meeting.

Many condominium owners are unaware that they have have some power, and never bother to attend the General Meetings. Many meetings don't achieve a Quorum at the first attempt so the Juristic Committees often invoke a clause whereby at the second meeting a lot less owners need to be in attendance to achieve a Quorum. The result can be a condominium project with hundreds of units, being controlled by very few owners, who get voted back into the Juristic Committees time and time again. The Committees have the power to make many important decisions that can affect a condominium project for better or worse.

Get involved!

It is the duty of the property owner to register any foreign guests at Immigration within 24 hours of their arrival at the property. If the owner (Thai or Foreign) doesn't do this then they are liable to a fine!

I know at least that one ( my friend ) had no notification of residence within 24 hours by the owner.
He rent with an agency, signed a contract, paid, ....but not more.
In the Condominium regulations i find nothing about " Hotel" or not Hotel.
Fact is, now in high season there are at least 30 condos permanently rent out by tourists, staying 1-3 weeks and going back.

Dear ChrisThai1965,
Please read all of my posts on this topic.

1) Read the Rules and Regulations of YOUR condominium. I am not talking about the condominium act.

2) See if there is any specific rule prohibiting short term rental of units at YOUR condominium.

3) If there is not any specific rule in YOUR condominium's Rules and Regulations that prohibits short term rentals, then the owners renting short term are not breaking the rules of the YOUR condominium.

4) If rules don't exist then refer to my previous post and take the action necessary to try to get the rules changed.

5) Regarding Immigration, I have informed you of the law. The fact that your friend was not registered at Immigration by the agent within 24 hours is between him and the agent, but the law is the law and fines can be imposed for non compliance.

6) The Hotel Act may or may not apply to the owners renting short term in YOUR Condominium building. I have posted this topic before so please refer to that post.

If you want professional legal advice then the law firm that I work for can provide it, you can message me directly if you wish.

Tuenchai

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