Foreigners entering Thailand are exempted from paying the planned tourism fee of 300 baht if they can show a valid work permit or border pass, explained to the media by tourism permanent secretary Chote Trachu.
“Expatriates who work in Thailand and have a work permit won’t have to pay the tourism fee as they are not categorised as international tourists.”
Foreign nationals with a border pass to trade during the day are also not affected by the tourism fee. Others who are also exempted include foreign diplomats and government officials, as well as children under 2 years old.
Mr. Chote also clarified that tourism fee is not only for air travelers. Foreigners entering Thailand through land borders can pay the tourism fee using related websites or kiosks at the border checkpoints, Mr. Chote added.
Mr. Chote, however, emphasized that for the program to ran smoothly, a well-coordinated systems from various government institutions should be put up.
For exampe, the Labor Ministry should link its database of work permit holders with the Tourism and Sports Ministry. Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand should also coordinate with the airlines.
The planned 300 baht tourism fee came out initially as a result of the 2015 bombing at the Erawan Shrine in Bangkok where many foreign visitors got injured, and that various government agencies shouldered the treatment expenses.
It was brought up once again during the Covid-19 pandemic to fund the tourism industry and serve as emergency fund for foreign travelers in the country.
This year, the Tourism and Sports Ministry is hoping to implement the plan as soon as possible.