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Hotels criticise entry fee for tourists

The Hatyai Songkhla Hotels Association has spoken out against the government imposed 300-baht tourism fee, saying it has proven a fresh blow following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Association president Sitthiphong Sitthiphatprapha on Saturday called out the levy as another obstacle to tourists after more than two years of the pandemic. 

The government initiated a plan to collect 300 baht from foreign visitors in 2020 after the cancellation of the tourist fund, but the plan has only been implemented this year. 

The taxation on all tourists without exemption or consideration to the mode of transportation has become an issue for visitors entering in private vehicles and those taking day trips into the country, Mr Sitthipong said. 

Some travellers living across the border from southern Thailand have ended up paying the 300-baht fee every day and become deterred by the cost, he said.

“The government should have considered this regulation more thoroughly and exempted visitors travelling in personal vehicles or on their personal motorcycles as most of them cross the border for day trips,” Mr Sitthiphong said.

According to the association, southern border districts such as Sadao, Na Tawee, Betong and Su-ngai Kolok, which depend on travellers from neighbouring Malaysia, have been particularly affected, according to the association.

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