Thailand looks at easing visa rules in bid to boost tourism

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The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) will propose a major easing of the visa rules for international travellers in a bid to boost tourism.

The most significant of the proposals would see the 30 day visa exemption extended to 45 days.

Currently a total of 56 countries are eligible for visa exemption – the stamp that grants tourists from countries such as the UK, USA, Germany, Singapore, Canada and others a stay of up to 30 days once they arrive in Thailand.

But now the TAT will propose the visa exemption be extended by a further 15 days. The idea is that the longer tourists can stay in Thailand, the more they will spend.

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In addition, the TAT will also propose waiving the 2,000 baht fee for the visa-on-arrival (VOA).

VOA which is the leading choice of tourists from India grants a stay of up to 15 days in Thailand.

Yuthasak Supasorn, governor of the TAT said that the fee may be insignificant but high spending but waiving it would still enable them to spend more during their trip in Thailand.

The proposal regarding easing visa rules for tourists came after the TAT met with more than 100 representatives from the tourism industry.

The TAT is expected to present the proposal to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) sub committee later this week.

Meanwhile, the private sector will also put forward a proposal to lift the restrictions which remain in place for the nighttime entertainment industry.

Operators want to see an end to the midnight closing and a return to the hours they were allowed to open before the start of the pandemic.

They are also calling for the mask mandate to be scrapped throughout Thailand.