Integrity Legal - Law Firm in Bangkok | Bangkok Lawyer | Legal Services Thailand Back to
Integrity Legal

Legal Services & Resources 

Up to date legal information pertaining to Thai, American, & International Law.

Contact us: +66 2-266 3698

ResourcesVisa & Immigration LawThailand Immigration LawInsurance Scheme in Thailand A "Bureaucratic Nightmare"?

Insurance Scheme in Thailand A "Bureaucratic Nightmare"?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing the insurance scheme which has been bandied about a lot here in Thailand. We have discussed Insurance quite a little bit, we are dealing with and I want to be clear, we're talking about Tourism Insurance, not necessarily talking about Retiree Insurance associated with particularly the O-A Retirement Visa. As we have noted in other videos on this channel, there are some changes said to be occurring at least in quarter four of 2022. As we have discussed insurance requirements are increasing. 

This video is more about just kind of a broad insurance requirement that has been proposed and they have kind of gone back and forth on it but we haven't seen any real finality here yet. I thought of making this video after reading a recent article from the Pattaya Mail,, the article is titled: Thai Compulsory Insurance for all foreigners threatens chaos. Quoting directly: "What began two years ago as a simple plan to charge all visitors 500 Baht (then reduced to 300 Baht), to provide cash to improve tourist facilities, such as repairing monuments or building toilets, has turned into a bureaucratic nightmare which many politicians say just isn't worth the bother. Part of the fee was said to be reserved for Tourist Insurance, but the latest announcement restricts cover to 30 days and lists only "accident, riot, terrorism and natural disasters" plus a cremation bonus. Most personal disasters such as COVID or in-patient hospitalization for diseases are not covered as common sense dictates with such a small premium. Expats hoping that the initiative would insure them for lifestyle diseases will be disappointed too." Yeah, so this program, we have discussed it in other videos. They have been talking about this kind of adding on this sort of insurance fee, kind of tacking it in if you will. It would not be a fee that would be sort of noticed by the average person coming in; it would be kind of built into a ticket price. I have to be honest, I have to agree where it says "has turned into a bureaucratic nightmare which many politicians say just isn't worth the bother". I have got to kind of ask, is something like this really worth it at this point? I feel the need to talk about it because it could have an impact on travel regulations, immigration rules with respect to inbound folks to Thailand so it falls under the bailiwick of this channel, that is why I am talking about it, but it doesn't seem like it is really worth, especially where we are looking at a situation where we have had two years of the entire tourism industry which was a major contributor to GDP, as we have noted in other videos, depending on the stats you read, somewhere between 18 and 20% of total Thai GDP and as we have noted in another video I believe back in January of 2022, that was utterly decimated and I mean literally decimated. It was 1 tenth; it went down to 1.8% of GDP down from like 18% of GDP. So a substantial knock in terms of GDP and to a sector that is a major job providing sector in Thailand. 

So at the moment is it really worth trying to work out some 300 baht a pop fee, Insurance whatever you want to call it when really what we should be doing is trying to encourage as much tourism as we possibly can which would be beneficial to the country as far as I'm concerned for a broad range of reasons most notably, obviously the capital inflow into Thailand, the capital inflow in the form of foreign reserves which that is helpful to the country for a number of different reasons most notably maintaining the trade deficit, maintaining trade balances where we want them. On top of that, yeah there are a lot of folks that have been out of a lot of work the last two years and the return of tourists will have a tremendous positive impact on those folks. 

So hopefully, we will start seeing things turning around and frankly I hope maybe these "politicians" have their way and maybe we if nothing else maybe table this for the moment and come back to it later rather than worry about this at a time when our main worry should be attracting as many tourists to Thailand as we can.