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Thailand to charge foreign arrivals 500 baht “tourism fee” from next year

Maya Taylor

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PHOTO: www.offscottfree.com

Despite Thailand struggling to reboot its decimated tourism sector, the government is pushing ahead with a proposed tourism fee – and has increased it by 200 baht. The National Tourism Policy Committee originally approved a fee of 300 baht at the start of this year, which would be used to develop tourism destinations and provide tourists with insurance benefits. According to a Bangkok Post report, the fee has now increased to 500 baht.

Yuthasak Supasorn from the Tourism Authority of Thailand says the extra 200 baht will be used to fund projects aimed at transforming the country’s tourism model from mass market to a more high-value, environmentally-conscious model. He’s pretty confident tourists won’t mind paying it.

“The additional cost won’t have an impact on tourists as we want to focus on the quality market. We hope this fund will support a national tourism makeover creating more safe and clean places.”

The Centre for Economic Situation Administration has approved the 500 baht fee, part of a wider “tourism transformation fund” to support transformational projects with a focus on sustainable, high-value tourism. The TAT says the fee will be collected from next year, with officials counting on getting 5 billion baht within the first year, based on 10 million foreign arrivals.

The Bangkok Post reports the TAT and the Tourism and Sports Ministry will hold talks with the relevant authorities to set up a fund committee and agree funding mechanisms, as well as deciding how the fee will be collected from foreign visitors. The fund committee will be tasked with deciding which projects qualify for support. Yuthasak adds that the goal of the fund is not to alleviate the economic devastation of Covid-19, but instead to focus on long-term growth.

For more information on how to get into Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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