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 LawIs the Thai Special Tourist Visa a "Publicity Stunt"?

Is the Thai Special Tourist Visa a "Publicity Stunt"?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing the Special Tourist Visa.

I got an email from a client the other day and he used the specific term, he just said "I am starting to think this whole Special Tourist Visa is simply a ”publicity stunt".  We were discussing the overall qualifications or the eligibility requirements I should say, associated with Special Tourist Visa issuance and they are many. Meanwhile there was talk that folks were going to be brought into Thailand under charter flights, specifically it is my understanding from China, that were going to be admitted into Thailand in Special Tourist Visa status. That was pushed back and then there was some discussion, I am not going to get into all this because it was rather anecdotal in my opinion, but there was some discussion that in fact no one had actually applied for the Visa. There had just been folks that had expressed interest in tourism to Thailand specifically. Now it seems to be that the narrative is October 25th we are going to start seeing arrivals in Special Tourist Visa status to Thailand. 

All of this remains to be seen and there seems to be at least at a policy level some serious discord or lack of agreement or lack of consensus regarding this Special Tourist Visa. There have also been polls conducted of the Thai population regarding whether or not tourists should be allowed back in and those polls have not been overly favorable although I would say that they have been more ambivalent than they have been overtly negative. 

Now that stated, in all of this, we were talking about all this and my client said "Isn't this just a publicity stunt?" The implication, and in certain ways it wasn't implied, it was explicit, he was basically saying "Well are they just trying to show that they are trying to get tourism back on track?" I think that is certainly the case. I think everyone in Thailand wants to see tourism back desperately. That stated, there are serious public health concerns at a policy level and they are trying to balance these concerns against the strong desire to see tourists return. 

So is the Special Tourist Visa a publicity stunt in a negative way? No, I think there is a genuine desire to bring back tourists. They are trying to do it under a scheme which best facilitates the concerns associated with public health and facilitates real tourism coming back but at least as at the time of this video, I think that there is real sort of almost I would say bureaucratic deadlock if you will with respect to how best to bring folks in while assuaging the concerns regarding public health and safety in the Kingdom of Thailand.