Thailand to offer five-month visa exemption for Chinese tourists

By Hoang Vu   September 13, 2023 | 03:37 am PT
Thailand to offer five-month visa exemption for Chinese tourists
Tourists visit Wat Arun temple in Bangkok, Thailand, January 18, 2023. Photo by Reuters
Thai Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin said Wednesday the country would grant visa exemptions to Chinese citizens for five months in a move to boost its economic and tourism recovery.

Chinese tourists can enter Thailand without a visa from September 25 to February 29 next year, he told reporters after a cabinet meeting on Wednesday as cited by Bloomberg.

The temporary waiver is expected to attract 5 million additional visitors, tourism minister Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol said at the meeting.

Thailand has welcomed 18.5 million foreign tourists so far this year with as many as 28 million expected by year-end.

Revenue from foreign travelers totaled 775 billion baht (US$21.6 billion) as of September 11, according to the tourism ministry.

Before the pandemic, Chinese tourists were the biggest feeder market of Thailand's tourism industry. In 2019, over 11 million Chinese tourists visited Thailand, accounting for more than a quarter of its total foreign arrivals.

Currently, Chinese visitors are allowed to apply for a visa on arrival that costs THB2,000 (US$57).

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