Thailand continues to push for tourism revenue despite Covid-19

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Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha urged all government agencies to support the “Amazing Thailand New Chapter” tourism campaign to be launched by the end of January. According to a government spokesman, the administration is pushing ahead with tourism plans the struggling economy desperately needs, despite the growing spread of the Omicron variant and Covid-19 infections across the country.

The Ministry of Tourism and Sports created the new slogan and travel campaign to promote various tourism activities in Thailand. They predict between 5 and 15 million people traveling to Thailand in 2022, with the projection based on no further lockdowns or border closures. With this range in tourist attendance, the government hopes between 1.3 and 1.8 trillion baht will be generated in revenue.

Various government agencies, including the Tourism Authority of Thailand and the Ministry of Tourism, plan to aggressively launch other campaigns aimed at boosting domestic tourism. For these tourist campaigns, the government will encourage travel while calling for strict compliance with Covid-19 control and safety rules.

While Thailand is desperately trying to entice international travelers to come despite the complex entry process, they have also confirmed their intention to enact something that travelers are sure not to like – a 300 baht entrance tax on all foreign arrivals, which is expected to begin in April.

Many countries have had these charges for years, but most are built into the cost of airfare (along with departure airport taxes, arrival taxes, state, local and federal taxes, fuel surcharges , etc.) and are hardly noticed. Thailand does not yet know how it will apply the additional charges.

Although this is another detour for potential travelers to the country, the Thai government intends to use the extra 300 baht per arrival to develop and maintain tourism and tourist attractions.

The money will also be used to fund insurance coverage to handle accidents, infections or deaths of tourists while in Thailand, which is of great concern during a pandemic. A hopefully silver lining: If Thailand then has coverage to manage hospitalizations and deaths from Covid-19, this could result in the eventual removal of the US$50,000 insurance requirement for the Thailand Pass entrance.

SOURCE: National Information Bureau of Thailand

For more information on how to enter Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE

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