Has anyone seem the folow up to this story have the fees be reduced for foriegners? Before it comes up i understand about driver licenses. I don't remeber seeing a thing
Cabinet nod for four measures
By Suchat Sritama
Published on January 21, 2009
The Cabinet yesterday approved only four measures out of 13 proposed to restore tourism in the near term.
Visa fees will be waived for three months. This applies to all nationalities, but is targeted at China, one of the top markets. Entrance charges at all national parks will be reduced, mainly to boost domestic tourism. The private sector can claim meeting and conference tax rebates at double the original rate.
Lastly, aircraft landing and parking fees will be discounted at major airports in the country.
Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva said the tourism industry needed to be revived through these schemes.
He earlier said tourist arrivals were returning close to pre-crisis levels.
The failed measures include cutting hotel room rates and air fares for Thai Airways International, reducing the value-added tax on hotel rooms for one year, waiving the annual fee of Bt80 per room and an urgent plan to promote the major destinations of Phuket, Krabi and Phang Nga for local tourism.
Abhisit did not mention the risk of increased job losses in the tourism industry or the extra budget of Bt15 billion requested by the Tourism Ministry to help smaller operators affected by the recent crisis.
However, the Cabinet approved Bt1 billion to help tourism and related businesses, but more funding is needed to support the recovery effort.
Prakit Chinamour-phong, president of the Thai Hotels Association, said three- and four-star hotels planned to discount room rates by 50 per cent for people visiting the country in February and March.
Among the main target markets are China, India, the Middle East, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan.
Most hotels in Bangkok and other major tourist cities are running at lower-than-usual occupancy rates following the recent airport closures.