Buy Car – Stick to These Eight Key Points Whenever You are Going Shopping For a Car To Shop For in Chiang Mai.

The general public transportation product is unreliable in most elements of Thailand. Having a car is essential for many Thais and expats who live here. Sure Bangkok offers the BTS and MRT. And most major cities and towns possess a van network and native buses or songthaews. But these don’t serve the requirements of everyone. I won’t reason that the BTS and MRT are perfect systems, but they’re inadequate for the requirements of the area. And they’re only appropriate for those residing in the central zone. Many expats are living in areas like Chonburi, Phuket and Chiang Mai, where subway lines and sky trains will still be a distant dream.

Sweating inside a bus, risking safety in the public van, and waiting on unscheduled buses ensures that lots of people decide to get a car, specially those living beyond Bangkok. The quality of life and freedom that owning buy car provides you with makes a massive difference. Imagine traveling on the bus or perhaps in a taxi by using a baby or praying to a higher power that your particular van driver will bring you in your destination safely.

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How to start

After I bought my first car I had a million questions. I wasn’t “into” cars and didn’t know much regarding the industry and the way things worked. The majority of people check out their dads for car advice, and so i traveled to mine. I was lucky because my father worked in the vehicle industry for over twenty-five years and then he provided a great deal of advice. I purchased an auto I had been happy with. However, here in Thailand things work differently. Thus I used the recommendation from my father and also from a number of great local sources: Damien Kerneis, Co-Founding father of SiamCarDeal, and Wasawad Wasuthasawat, Country Manager at

I also used plenty of online sources and thru this post I gives you quotes, figures, and links to useful sites that will help you purchase a car in Thailand.

Why Get a Car?

Location influences your have to purchase a car. I’m not sure many people residing in Central Bangkok could justify having a car as there is good public transport. There’s also plenty of traffic which could make driving a nightmare.

If you want to travel outside the downtown area for business, it gets essential to obtain private transportation. Using a car might sound good for weekend trips outside of the big city, but you must think of how frequently you would probably take advantage of the car and when it could enhance your quality of life.

For those who have chosen to purchase a car, where you are will help determine what sort of car would best satisfy your desires. In the event you travel long distances from a rural area a larger car for cruising around would make sense. If you reside from the city, picking a small compact car to help make traversing through traffic easier is definitely the better choice. You might follow the Thai trend and purchase a massive pickup truck, regardless of where you reside.

Pickup truck is actually a primary choice for many Thai families.

Long Lasting vs Short Term

A vital factor for most expats to consider is whether or not they will be staying in the nation for a long- or short-time frame.

Long-term expats have more reason to buy a car since it is a substantial financial investment in Thailand. Those married, here on retirement visas, or people that have full time jobs who stay for the long term may benefit from using a car.

Those here for a short period have to take into account the resale price of their car and how easy it’ll be to offer. As you’ll see there is a large amount of paperwork involved when selling an automobile. For those for a brief time, it is probably not the best choice. You also have to consider that when you must leave Thailand on a certain date the car has to be sold by then which could create problems in case you are rushing to find a buyer.

There may be always a choice of leasing an auto for a time period of several months as much as a year or relying on local public transport and taxis. I wouldn’t purchase a car when you aren’t will be in Thailand for more than a year-except if you live in a rural area.

If you’re seeking a brand which holds it value then the best bet is actually a Honda or Toyota or maybe the top models from Japanese car makers.


One common basis for buying a car in Thailand is for once you have a family group and don’t want to depend upon public transport. I wouldn’t wish to take a baby on a bus or maybe in a taxi. I feel it might be irresponsible plus a car is the safest way to transport your family members if you are unattainable of your MRT and BTS in Bangkok. have listed their top cars released in 2016 for families. This list may be worth a style as many models are available in Thailand.

New Cars vs Used Cars

One of the greatest choices you’ll need to make is whether you need to buy a used or new car. You will find benefits and drawbacks to both. A lot of people want to buy new due to the lower maintenance costs and frequent special offers. But additionally there is a thriving used car market in Thailand. And the chance of buying utilizing expats in Thailand means you are able to undergo most of the process in English.

New Cars

Whenever you purchase a new car, there are a variety of benefits. You can aquire a handful of extras thrown in if you are efficient at negotiating. Here in Thailand, most dealers often sell in the recommended list prices however the extras are where you could try and get added value. It’s normal to have your first year’s insurance covered or tinted windows, for example.

If you purchase new, you’ll have satisfaction knowing you are the first owner of the car, so there shouldn’t be any surprises afterwards. Purchasing a new car means you might have more finance options accessible to you, and you’ll have the opportunity to talk towards the dealership regarding your personal situation.

During my research for this particular article, people claimed that the dealership where they bought their car also offered them better part-exchanges on new car purchases. Your relationship between the customer and dealer allows expats to inquire more questions with the experts before, during, and once the buying process. As you’ll see underneath the buying process isn’t always easy but by utilizing a certified dealer you’ll be coping with salespeople that have experience negotiating with expats.

Used Cars

The main good thing about a second hand car is you get yourself a cheaper pair of wheels. There is a potential for a bargain in Thailand, but in general used cars hold their value well and price more than you might pay in western countries.

You might also need the choice to acquire a second hand car from your licensed dealer which suggests you’ll better the chances of you receiving a service package or insurance. Used cars can be obtained from a variety of sources and some of them provide the cheapest prices in the marketplace.

One negative for used cars is definitely the 7% VAT that’s included in the bill if you purchase from your showroom or second hand car dealer, or utilize a loan to finance the buying. To prevent this payment you can purchase in cash coming from a private seller. Buying from a private seller having looked after their car is an excellent option. Thai people call these “house cars.”

What’s Popular?

Looking around the roads of Thailand I saw two trends. The 1st was the volume of pickup trucks as well as the second was the excitement of Honda and Toyota cars.

From the UK the location where the roads are loaded with Fords and Renaults, I put the number of Hondas and Toyotas as a result of the Thai love of Japanese products. However I soon discovered some other reasons with regard to their popularity. Honda and Toyota are a pair of the auto brands that are created in Thailand and have lower taxes and selling prices than imports. Tax is likewise the reason for the large number of pickup trucks. These cars have got a reduced excise tax, leading them to be a popular choice for most people.

Another reason why for that rise in popularity of these brands is the option of certified mechanics. Every town can have a garage to repair these cars as well as the parts are super easy to locate. Even third-party garages will 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 option if you were trying to sell your automobile after several years.

Whatever the model, black are white are two most favored colors in Thailand.

Researching shows Toyota, Honda, Isuzu, Mitsubishi, Mazda, Nissan, Suzuki, Ford, Chevrolet, and MG are manufactured in Thailand and so are priced much 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 even in America. Imported finished cars and trucks are subject to a 300% tax, causing them to be 3 x more costly when compared to Europe or America.

“The Corolla or Altis is one of the best-selling models for most people,” Damien Kerneis said. “It holds its value well and it is possible to find spare parts.” As this is the style of most taxis in Bangkok, it is without saying that these cars are a wonderful option for those on a tight budget looking at getting their particular wheels in Thailand.

There are many different options when it comes to buying a car, used or new, in Thailand. Traditional dealerships are popular but there is also an ever-growing listing of online options for purchasing a car.

New Cars


The dealership was the first place I visited when choosing a vehicle in Thailand. I felt reassured by going to an official dealership and felt I would receive better service and a lot more legal fallback if there are any problems. Furthermore, it seemed easier to get finance with an authorized dealership than relying on alternative methods, which are listed later in this post.

I went into the entire process of buying without the need of a preference towards brand. My issue was budget. I would love to have a BMW, but based on Thailand prices they are certainly not excellent value for the investment-and solution of my range of prices. Attending a dealership meant I could possibly chose a cheaper brand, examine all of their variety of models, and discuss pricing options. The main benefit is there are car dealerships in the big towns and cities. Within ten kilometers of my condo in Bangkok, by way of example, I could visit an array of car dealerships.

Another advantage of a dealership is you can see new and used cars and compare costs and conditions. Most official dealerships have promotions, and supply warranties and extras on not merely new cars, but used cars too.

You will also have an opportunity to check drive an auto when you have a Thai driving license, a license from home country, or even an international license.

Just like a multitude of locations in Thailand, at dealerships salespeople will treat you as outlined by your appearance. Once I walked in wearing a scruffy T-shirt and shorts I got little attention. However, when I went along with jeans, a collar shirt, and dress shoes I needed salespeople jumping over themselves to assist me. Maybe this is just random luck-or bad customer satisfaction at some dealerships-there is however a correlation involving the two.

Car Event

The Bangkok International Motor Show is amongst the most popular places for Thais to acquire a new car. Sales from your 2015 show were supposed to be over 40,000 which is a lot for that 7-day event. Often discounts are provided there are excellent promotions. 2017’s event was held with the Impact Arena about the outskirts of Bangkok right before Songkran.

In past times, the case has been criticized for being much more about the pretty models, but once the recent Junta takeover things have been toned down along with the cars are now taking center stage again.

Also, it is common to 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 have got huge signs offering discounts yet it is not clear if these are the same deals you’d get on the dealership. One benefit of these events on the mall is that there is less pressure to purchase and you also have the opportunity to discover and sit in a car.

Regenthomecar, a good example of a car tent in Thailand

One of my Thai friends told me I really could purchase a car on the tent which confused me. I googled “car tent” and found pictures of tents covering cars. It wasn’t until I discovered this post where I realized an automobile tent is a used-car dealership.

Many cars include limited warranties and lots of are sold “as seen” so you need to have an actual comprehension of cars to get a good buy. Tricks for example winding down the mileage and putting different parts into cars do go on so buyer beware.

Many car tents work along with a finance company and a loan can be arranged immediately. It’s best to produce a payment and drive the automobile away. It’s not unheard of for car tents to change parts every time a customer pays a deposit and comes back later for your car. Also, if you pay by cash the cost of the auto could be beyond if financing, since some car tents get commission from offering loans.

If you are searching for any car to obtain from point A to point B then seeking bargains at the car tent happens to be an option.


Car auctions are great fun to look at. The atmosphere is exciting and I think it is intriguing to analyze the tactics of the bidders trying figure out their top price. Investing in a car through auction is one thing I would personally be wary to try for a variety of reasons though.

The issue is that you have to compete against other bidders and might wind up paying a lot more than you’re able to from the heat of battle. At auctions you’ll have to make quick decisions and might not have a full description of your vehicle or have limited possibilities to inspect it. I wouldn’t buy a car from auction unless I needed full expertise in the car and may inspect your vehicle first, ensuring it absolutely was in good order.

However, you may sometimes get a bargain at an auction if others aren’t interested in the car you desire. Those that have expertise in cars may be confident that 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 to the cars available and list fees you should pay.

Manheim gives the following information about fees plus some useful tips on the FAQ page.

A buyers administration fee of 8,560 baht (including VAT 7%) pertains to all lots purchased in the financiers vehicle auction as well as the salvage vehicle auction. The buyer’s fee for burnt out vehicles is 4,000 baht and then for motorcycles it’s 1,650 baht. For trucks it’s 12,500 baht. If you purchase a financiers or salvage vehicle using Simulcast, an additional buyer’s fee of 1,420 baht applies. Should you buy a motorcycle using Simulcast, an extra buyer’s fee of 250 baht applies. Full payment in cash or bank check is essential by 4pm the working day right after the sale. VAT is included unless otherwise indicated. Check on site, in auction catalogues, or with cashiers for fees applicable to the vehicle.

The auction is actually a fun, exciting, fast process. So here’s some ideas to help you succeed.

Set yourself a budget

Check the car you would like to buy, such as the documents

Pay by internet bank transfer for the safest approach to payment

All cars can be bought “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 hold back until the very last minute.

A brief look on yahoo shows there are plenty of car auctions in Thailand so you might be able to get a local independent auction close to you.


Buying a car on the internet is gaining popularity nowadays. Many sites have sprung up in Thailand to cater to the desires of Internet shoppers. Websites like these cater toward the sales of used cars, but some websites offer sales of the latest cars, or links to special offers from dealerships.

Additionally, there are many listings on forums and social websites which could match you with a seller. The words “Buyer Beware” is essential here, because there could be limited recourse in the event the buyer purchases a vehicle as seen and happens to be a lemon.

For an excellent source of online cars in Thailand check out the next sites:

This page is simple to use and clear. You enter simple information about your financial budget, location, and make and model and you have a list of results. Aside from the license plate number, you will get all things in English, along with the lists will give you pictures and make contact with amount of the owner. Remember this site is perfect for people considering buying used cars.

The website is effective should you be looking to have a guide price and locate information regarding your nearest dealer. A significant selling point of this web site is that they list cars for sale in dealerships, both new and used. Because of this you are able to pick-up a bargain coming from a dealer and not merely coming from a private individual.

Other selection for online purchases is to check out sites like and, that provide secondhand goods including cars. Craiglist also provides a website for used cars in Thailand. Again, buyer beware and understand that you’re unlikely to have any support from your seller following the purchase has become made.

Private Listings

After I was going to buy my first car around 15 years ago my dad went straight to the newsagents and gathered a duplicate of Auto Trader magazine. It listed a large number of used cars available for sale and was like his bible. You could potentially make a price comparison and specs to find out that which was an acceptable price for a variety of models.

Nowadays, plenty of this business has moved online but it’s still easy to find offline car listings within Thailand. National and local newspapers have car sections with private listings, which can be worth a glance if you want to go this route.

One of my colleagues bought up a car from your private listing at his condo. The seller had left a flyer along with the sale progressed quickly since they lived several rooms away from one another.

Also, many cars in the street have for sale posters or stickers to them. You may even see a available for sale brochure for your car you’re seeking. There’s no exact science to purchasing an automobile, but fate might provide you with to your dream car on the soi you’re walking down.

Buying Process

When you’ve went ahead to make your purchase you have a few hoops to leap through. For the way you got the car will depend on the amount of the following you’ll have to do. When buying a fresh car it’s probable that the dealer can look after most, if not all, of the paperwork for yourself. However when investing in a used car, you’ll have to be more mitts on if buying from your private individual.

New Car

After choosing the best dealer you should reserve the car if you are paying a deposit, usually 5,000 – ten thousand baht. The reason for this is certainly that cars in Thailand are often intended to order. You should get the receipt after paying the deposit, stating everything relating to your new car including: model, color, delivery date, and freebies you got from your negotiation. Sometimes, it could take approximately 6 months to the car to get sent to you.

After the car arrives, you have to look into the car from bumper to bumper. Be sure you take it for the test drive and look that every freebies are included. Check the warranty for the manufacture date, inspection dates, and customer details. Ensure all things are perfect before accepting the automobile. When possible, bring an automobile expert along with you. Also, take note of the engine number to make sure that this is the same car you inspected.

You ought to receive all documents on that day including auto insurance, CPTL, car manual, the temporal red book, as well as the tax sticker.

New cars will need special red license plates that will be replaced with the state white plates in certain months. The price of these temporary ones is about 2,500 baht but you will end up refunded if you change up to the white plates. Failure to transfer in the red temporary plates on the white official ones could lead to a great if you are pulled over with the police. A lot of people do prefer to keep red plates on simply to show they may have a fresh car.

You will definitely get you’re official blue ownership book a couple of days after or on a single day you will get the white plates. In the event you finance the car you’ll obtain a copy in the blue book. The finance company is going to be listed because the owner of the car. The blue book and car will likely be transferred into your name once the loan pays off.

When driving with red license plates there are some stuff you should be aware. First, you should always keep your ownership and transfer documents together with you. In case the police plan to hold you back then you’re liable to pay a great if you can’t prove ownership. Second, with red plates you happen to be restricted to driving during daylight hours and also in the province the automobile is registered to.

All car registration paperwork is managed by the Department of Land Transport. The dealer should do it to suit your needs once all of the following documents have been prepared:

Passport (signed copies of most visa pages and data page)

A signed copy of any work permit or perhaps a certificate of residency issued by the Immigration Bureau or the applicant’s embassy

A legitimate Thai driving license

If you want a specific registration plate number, it can be done sixty days ahead of time before your car arrives with the Department of Land Transport. A duplicate of your respective passport, residential certificate, and also the car purchase contract are needed. Though some car dealerships must be able to try this for the small fee.

Department of Land Transport in Bangkok Area 3

Second Hand Car


Prior to buying a pre-owned car, look at the car’s Blue Book or its copy (in case the car is financed) as well as checking the auto. The engine number should be the just like what is listed on the blue book. This ensures the automobile belongs to the seller and prevents unexpected problems including getting a stolen car. If a seller cannot reveal to you the blue book, it’s preferable to take your hard earned money elsewhere.

Although the required documents from the buyer are identical as registering a new car, the treatment of buying a used car may be separated by five common cases.

Case One

The initial case is to find the vehicle from the used car dealer similar to a car tent. Prices are usually beyond buying from your private seller but they’ll have all the details linked to the auto transfer and also keep up with the financial loan.

Case Two

Another case is to find from a private seller assuming you may have enough cash. You’ll must handle all of the paperwork yourself. A personal seller provides documents similar to 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 let the buyer complete the complete process once all things are given money for. Or you as well as the seller can arrange a date and go to the Department of Land Transport together to accomplish the transfer.

Case Three

Your third case is basically that you have plenty of cash although the car remains on finance. It’s recommended that you should proceed to the finance company along with the seller and finish the acquisition contract and transaction there. The finance company ought to be the anyone to carry out the paperwork and send an updated Blue Book with the name within two weeks.

Case Four

If you have to finance the vehicle you need to pay a deposit beforehand, normally at 5,000 baht-ensure that you sign the deposit contract. The vendor should supply you with a couple of weeks to make the financial loan. Once it’s approved, you need to get a check issued with the seller’s name. Then, the seller should present you with the necessary documents to make the vehicle transfer. You can handle the rest yourself or even the seller can go to the Department of Land Transport with you. If you can’t get a loan punctually, the vendor has right to accept the deposit unless it’s negotiated beforehand.

Case Five

If a car remains to be on finance and you need to get financing to acquire the vehicle, the best way is to go to the finance company and possess them transfer the loan into the name. You may still must pay a percentage towards the seller along with a processing fee to the finance company though.


The transfer process takes several steps. Step one is usually to submit all paperwork and acquire it checked and stamped by an official. During this period, they can have you return in a few days when you purchased a car from another province. When everything has been checked, you have to revisit and inspect the auto. The inspection ensures the auto matches the important points on the submitted forms and that we now have hardly any other problems. Finally you may be asked to return to collect plates and also the Blue Book.

In the event the car is transferred within the same province, everything needs to be finished within several hours. If it’s moved to another province, it will take a few days.

For a look at doing the method yourself get more information at an account of registering an auto yourself in Chiang Mai. This report originates from 4 years ago although the process continues to be the same. The complete dexupky01 in the article is 940 baht to register the vehicle. It took time and effort as the owner bought the car from Bangkok and registered your vehicle in Chiang Mai.

The transfer expense is different in line with the estimated amount of the sale value of your automobile. There’s a 105 baht for transferring fee and a stamp fee of .005 baht in the estimated car price. For example, when the car is estimated at 300,000 baht, the complete transfer cost would be 1,605 baht (105 (300000 x .005)).

Finally, when you are unable to accomplish it yourself, you can give the potency of attorney to a different person to perform the paperwork for you.

Used cars registered inside a different province will be needing a brand new set of plates. The cost of this is certainly around 200-300 baht.

Finance Options

One of my biggest concerns when buying an automobile was where the money will come from. Despite the lowest priced models I would personally still must borrow to perform the sale.

It’s easy for foreigners to get loans in Thailand to buy an automobile but you will find strict restrictions. The foreigner will need to have a checking account with good standing in a local bank. The foreigner requires a work permit or similar showing they’re here long lasting. Some individuals stated that they have been successful receiving a car loan utilizing a tourist visa, but it seems to take plenty of effort, needs a much higher deposit payment, and it is determined from the manager at each place.

For that first car a foreigner buys they will want a Thai guarantor. This is often a relative or friend but they should be conscious of the problem and what happens when the foreigner defaults in the loan. For purchasing all cars thereafter and where loan is through the identical source, a guarantor is not needed. The exception to needing a guarantor happens when the deposit payment is between 50-70%.

The final stipulation for obtaining that loan is that the absolute minimum downpayment of approximately 20% is essential. Sometimes a bank will request a higher deposit if you are new in the united states or have limited funds within your bank. In any event be sure to prepare copies of your work permit, passport, bank statement, and wage slips before you apply for a financial loan.

Reuters reported that this rate of loan defaults continues to be rising due to poor performance of your Thai economy and increasing household debt. Hence the conditions to get financing have grown to be stricter and the bank may request a Thai guarantor depending on your circumstances. One positive is that the banks are prepared to loan money to foreigners for auto purchases, unlike with regards to financing property. They also offer special incentives including % interest introductory offers.