Thailand may introduce a tourist fee of 500 baht (around PLN 60) from next year. According to the government’s plans, the fees are to be used in the fund intended for the modernization of tourist infrastructure. The authorities are counting on new tax revenue of 5 billion lashes.
Yuthasak Supasorn, head of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said the Bangkok Post said the levy of 500 baht per person should start next year. According to the website, it is 200 baht higher than originally assumed.
Thailand. New tourist tax
Even at the beginning of this year, it was supposed to be 300 baht – the tax was to be allocated to the development of tourism and medical assistance for tourists – but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was not implemented. After a few months, the idea of introducing a fee was reconsidered and the amount was increased. As the head of the Tourism Authority of Thailand explains, these 200 additional lashes will be used to finance projects aimed at transforming mass tourism into a more valuable and environmentally friendly one. He also expressed the hope that tourists would not mind supporting the “tourism transformation fund”.
– We want to focus on quality. We hope that this fund will help transform the tourism sector in our country by creating safer and cleaner places, Yuthasak Supasorn assured. In an interview with the Bangkok Post, he also added that the fund’s purpose was not to mitigate the catastrophic effects of the pandemic.
Supasorn hopes to collect 5 billion lashes a year, assuming that 10 million foreign tourists will come to Thailand in 2022. According to Statista, in 2020 Thailand was visited by 6.8 million tourists, a year earlier, before the outbreak of the pandemic, there were 39.8 million.
The 500 baht fee has been approved by the Center for Economic Situation Administration (CESA). According to the website, the next step for the TAT and the Ministry of Tourism and Sport is the appointment of an appropriate committee to decide how the fee will be charged from foreign guests, and which projects will deserve support from the fund.