Thailand’s New Tourist Tax: A Small Fee for a Big Cause?

Thailand has just approved a new tax that will be imposed on international visitors who stay overnight in the country. Starting on June 1, 2023, visitors arriving by air will be taxed 300 baht (which is about $9) and those arriving by land or water transportation will be charged 150 baht (which is roughly $4).

The government officials say the tourism tax will help offset medical costs for tourists and support the development of domestic tourism in the country. The new tax is expected to generate over $115 million this year alone. However, the local tourism industry has criticized the move, according to the Bangkok Post.

There are no restrictions for U.S. leisure travelers to enter Thailand, except for having a passport that’s valid for at least six months from their arrival date. Americans don’t need a visa for stays fewer than 45 days, but they may be asked to provide proof of an onward or return ticket by Thai immigration officials or airline staff. All coronavirus restrictions have been lifted.

Tourism is making a strong comeback in Thailand, with authorities expecting to welcome 25 million visitors in 2023. However, overtourism is a big issue in some of the country’s most popular destinations, such as its beaches. So, travel companies are encouraging their clients to explore other parts of the country to avoid overtourism.

Thailand is not the only country that has implemented a visitor entrance fee. Other popular travel destinations, such as Europe and Bhutan, have also imposed similar fees to visitors.