Thailand National Tourism Policy Committee has approved a new USD $10 / 300-baht tourist tax for all international travelers, according to Sports Minister, Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn.
As stated by local media, the government plans to use 34 bahts of the 300 baht fee to ensure tourists who get sick or injured have proper access to medical treatments. The date the new policy is set to take effect has not been released yet.
The rest of the collected money is meant to be used for the management of local tourist destinations.
Chote Trachu from the Tourism Ministry stated the fee was supposed to be enacted last year, but the Covid-19 pandemic forced them to delay it.
From an epidemiology and economic point a USD $10 entry fee makes total sense. Data show that multiple countries’ solid run on containing the pandemic lasts only a few weeks after reopening for tourism.
A few weeks ago almost a thousand new cases of COVID-19 were traced back to Samut Sakhon province, a hub of the country’s $6bn seafood export industry, only 30 miles south-west of Bangkok.
Since the pandemic started, the country has reported a total of 11,450 cases, 8,288 recoveries and 69 deaths. An important percentage of the infections have been connected to migrants who come to the country to work the toughest jobs Thailand’s economy has to offer.
But, Thailand’s capacity to thrive during difficult times and cope successfully with adversity is long known.
The country has been launching bold ideas to attract tourism over the last few weeks.
Back in December, immigration authorities announced to the world their intention to roll out new Smart Visas for digital nomads and freelancers that will allow them to live and work in the country for up to 4 years.
Just a couple of days ago, the Thai government approved six golf resorts, including three in Kanchanaburi province, where travelers can freely move and engage in golf games while quarantining.