No refunds for those affected by Special Tourist Visa delays in Thailand
Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) governor Yutthasak Supasorn confirmed on Oct. 2 that tourists will be allowed to return to Thailand under the Special Tourist Visa scheme.
However, some of these visits appear to have been delayed.
The first group of tourists from China were expected to arrive in Phuket today (Oct. 8), reported the Bangkok Post.
However, a check with the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand did not turn up any chartered flights.
According to Khaosoden, those affected by the delays will not be offered any refunds by the government for any flights, accommodations, insurance, and other fees they may have paid for their STVs.
“It’s part of the conditions of the STV that they had to pay first,” said Supasorn. “So, there’s no need for those refunds, because their trip is not cancelled, it’s just delayed.”
Between 120 to 300 tourists would have been affected by this, according to various sources.
The TAT governor said that the first group of tourists from China will still arrive in Phuket under the STV scheme within the month, despite the delays.
Delayed because of Vegetarian Festival
According to Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew, the flight was delayed because locals feared that the tourists could cause a second wave of Covid-19 infections, reported The Thaiger.
He said that they will now arrive after Phuket’s annual Vegetarian Festival — a yearly affair known for its rituals that include self-mutilation.
The festival — which runs from Oct. 17 to 25 — usually attracts domestic tourists from other provinces.
The Phuket governor said that there were concerns that foreign tourists coming to watch the festival may bring the virus to city.