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Cambodia hopes for more visitors despite 3,000 USD deposit

Cambodia Airports, which has been developing three international airports in the country, is looking forward to seeing travellers back to the Kingdom despite strict government health measures and a prolonged suspension of tourist visas to foreigners, according to the Khmer Times.

France’s VINCI Airports, which is a shareholder of 70 percent of Cambodia Airports, said that the situation has slightly returned to normal because some countries have lifted their travel bans.

“Our sister companies start resuming their commercial flights at the beginning of June. Strong health and safety measures have been implemented at all our airports, such as the obligation to wear a mask throughout all the journey and at the airport. In Cambodia, we are looking forward to seeing travellers return,” the company said.

Cambodia Air Communications and Public Relations Director Khek Norinda said by email on June 18 that air traffic has remained largely tepid and only a few airlines have been operating with reduced frequencies since the beginning of the viral outbreak.

“Some airlines have considered restoring flights to Cambodia in the next three months pending better market conditions and countries easing travel and border restrictions,” he said.

Norinda said while the company fully supports the government’s policy to combat the spread of COVID-19, this recent measure may give the perception that visiting Cambodia is costly.

Cambodia’s tourism and aviation have been gravely threatened by new requirements imposed by the government that require foreigners to pay a 3,000 USD returnable deposit. Many say this would kill the tourism and aviation industries.

However, the government said that it will not charge Cambodians holding foreign passports for laboratory testing and medical treatment while foreign diplomats are allowed to self-quarantine upon arrival in the Kingdom.

Chea Aun, spokesman of the State Secretariat of Civil Aviation, said early this month that there were about 200 to 300 passengers entering Cambodia per day.

Since Cambodia lifted the ban on people from six countries, including Iran, Italy, Germany, Spain, France and the US on May 20, the number has increased by 20-300 per day.

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