“We Travel Together” plan to boost domestic tourism expanded

Thai lawmakers are giving the third phase of the government’s “We Travel Together” scheme a green light to continue boosting domestic tourism. PM Prayut Chan-o-cha along with other lawmakers approved the scheme, titled “Rao Tiew Duay Kan” in Thai, which is a programme that subsidises hotel bookings. The scheme’s third phase is set to cover an additional 2 million people while the government is adding a new domestic tourism stimulus package called the Tour Tiew Thai.

The extension was originally rejected by the cabinet after too many fraudulent claims plagued the first 2 stages of the programme. To help stop those from taking advantage of the scheme, The Tourism Authority of Thailand and the Tourism and Sports Ministry are redesigning the system.

“We Travel Together” was scheduled to end on April 30, but after the TAT presented improvements along with a proposal to expand the coverage and duration, the new extension will be in place through August 31. The current package encourages travel by having the government pay 40% of the normal room rates for customers staying at registered properties. Hotels must submit room rates and the number of rooms when joining the programme.

Under the programme, properties are required to re-register to allow the TAT to confirm their information and to reduce potential fraud. Tourists must book their rooms 7 days in advance. E-vouchers will be issued after properties are approved, but have been changed from a 900 baht weekend rate to a flat 600 baht per day.

The Tour Tiew Thai scheme is similar to the We Travel Together programme with the government paying 40% of package tours, not exceeding 5,000 baht. The goal is for 1 million travellers to participate through August 31. Tour packages must be booked with a domestic tourism agency and be a minimum of 3 days and 2 nights with a 12,500 baht value. The programme is only valid for travellers over 18 and for travel during the week from Sunday to Thursday.

SOURCE: Chiang Rai Times

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Neill Fronde

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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