I'm planning on fully retiring in Thailand in 5 years on a retirement visa. However, I'm ready to go now, but don't want to apply yet until I'm 100% certain.

I'm aware of visa runs, and the risks of returning to the SAME country too quickly.

But what about rotating between these 3 countries, every 90 days?

I want to rent an Airbnb for 3 months in Thailand. Then fly to Kuala Lumpur and rent an Airbnb for 3 months. Then fly to the Philippines and rent an Airbnb for 3 months.

Then repeat the loop.

Would immigration in any of these countries care at all, considering how long I'm gone for, and the fact I'm never returning immediately back to their country?

Could this work for years? Any risk?

  • 6
    In five years’ time, the rules relating to this visa might be different, or it might not even exist. If you qualify now, why not apply for the 1 year retirement visa option and save yourself the hassle and visa run costs, in the short term at least.
    – Traveller
    Commented Feb 22 at 10:05
  • 6
    You'll have to consider the non-visa related issues associated with such a scheme: health insurance (I'm sorry to say, especially since you are on the older side of life), taxes, etc. You may end up in a situation where you are apparently resident nowhere, which seems good on the face of it for taxes, but may irk some people, and end up in weird situations. Also this may be more suitable for expatriates.stackexchange.com
    – jcaron
    Commented Feb 22 at 11:57
  • 1
    Maybe it is a question better suited in expactriates stack exchange. Commented Feb 22 at 14:12

2 Answers 2


It will work fine until one day it doesn't, and then you'll be in a pickle.

That said, if you're cycling between three countries and spending half a year "out" before returning, it definitely does not look like normal visa running and you could probably do this for quite a few years. It sounds quite exhausting to do this long term though.


The only country among the 3 that doesn't like visa runs is Malaysia – the other two seem to welcome "grey area" tourists: if I remember correctly, the Philippines even offer tourist visa extensions in-country for up to a year.

As lambshaanxy says, it works until it doesn't. If I were in your situation, I'd probably spend more time, every time, in Thailand and the Phils, and go less often to Malaysia. Thailand also has (or had, I haven't kept up) two-entry visas, which, with a visa run to a nearby country like Laos and extensions, allowed for half a year. That could make your schedule slightly less hectic.

  • I could add Vietnam to the rotation and make it so I only make a single trip to Malaysia per year for 90 days. Surely that would be very low risk? Commented Feb 22 at 17:42

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