Thailand to extend visa-free stay for Russians to 90 days

By Hoang Phong   October 16, 2023 | 07:31 pm PT
Thailand to extend visa-free stay for Russians to 90 days
Russian tourists at a beach in Phuket, Thailand, on March 20, 2020. Photo by AFP
Thailand has decided to triple the duration of visa-free stays for Russians to 90 days starting in November as it seeks to boost tourism during the peak season.

The policy would continue until April next year, Bangkok Post quoted tourism minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol as telling reporters.

Russia is one of Thailand’s five biggest tourism markets along with Malaysia, China, South Korea, and India.

Over 900,000 Russians have already visited Thailand this year as against the full-year target of one million, according to data from the Tourism and Sports Ministry.

Before the Covid pandemic, Thailand used to receive 1.5 million annually.

Thailand started seeing an influx of Russian visitors again after the pandemic in the final months of 2022 as they flocked there to escape their winter.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand has set a target of two million Russian visitors next year, driven by an increase in regular flights.

Thailand is seeking ways to revive tourism during the peak travel season, and targets 25 million foreign arrivals this year.

It has received 19 million so far.

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