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Thailand waives visa fee for Chinese tourists

In a step to court more tourists from the increasingly important China source market, the Tourism Authority of Thailand has announced that visa fees for Chinese tourists will be waived for the next four months.

 

A representative from TAT Beijing Office has confirmed that the favorable visa policy will last for four months, and said that they are waiting for notice of the exact date on which the policy will be implemented. The waiver will save Chinese tourists more than 200 yuan for each visa application.

 

The events in November 2008, when airports in Thailand were closed as a result of political turmoil, have inflicted heavy losses on the country's tourism. This offer of free visa service to Chinese tourists is seen as a move to revive the country's flagging tourism industry.

 

China accounts for about 10% of the tourists visiting Thailand. However the numbers are dropping from one million Chinese tourists in 2006, to 800,000 in 2007, and to fewer still in 2008.

 

(China Hospitality News February 24, 2009)