PRACHUAP KHIRI KHAN: Starting 1 October, 2022, and effective until 31 March, 2023, tourists from many countries will be offered extended stays in the kingdom as part of a measure to stimulate international tourism during the sixth-month tourism “high season”.
The measure, which was proposed by Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and approved by Thailand’s Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) at the end of August, increases the period of stay granted for tourist arrival categories as follows:
•Tourists from countries/territories entitled to a visa exemption, can be stamped for stays of up to 45 days, up from the usual 30 days granted
•Those eligible for a Visa on Arrival (VOA) can be granted 30 days, up from the usual 15 days.
According to an announcement by TAT News, there are 52 countries or territories whose subjects are eligible for the visa exemption granting of 45 days in the kingdom.
They are Andorra, Australia, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, Brunei, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritius, Monaco, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Oman, The Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovak, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the UAE, UK, Ukraine, and USA.
Tourists from 18 countries or territories that qualify for the promotional 30-day VOA are Bhutan, Bulgaria, China, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Fiji, Georgia, India, Kazakhstan, Malta, Mexico, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Uzbekistan, and Vanuatu.
Further, the TAT notes, passport holders of the following countries can enter Thailand without a visa under bilateral agreements: Cambodia (14 days), Myanmar (14 days), Hong Kong (30 days), Lao PDR. (30 days, Macau (30 days), Mongolia (30 days), Russia (30 days and VOA), Vietnam (30 days), Argentina (90 days), Brazil (90 days), Chile (90 days), Korea (ROK) (90 days), and Peru (90 days).
Tourists from all other countries or territories are required to apply for a visa only at the Royal Thai Embassy or the Royal Consulate-General in their respective country of residence.
According to the Thai Public Relations Department, citing CCSA spokesman, Taweesin Visanuyothin (psychiatric doctor and television actor), just over one million “tourists” entered Thailand in July, and during the first seven months of 2022, the tourism sector generated THB 157 billion baht (US$4.2 bn) in revenue.
It has also been reported that 86 million domestic tourism events (persons-times) recorded in the first eight months of this year generated THB377.7bn ($10.2bn).
In related news, public-private sector investments in Hua Hin aim to bring in more domestic and international tourists directly to Prachuap Khiri Khan through the Hua Hin airport.