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Thai Special Tourist Visas Closer to Realization

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing Special Tourist Visas yet again.

In a recent article from the Bangkok Post, that is, the article is titled: Emergency Decree Extension, New Visas Approved. Quoting directly: "The panel," and by the panel they mean the CCSA, that is the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration which is chaired by the Prime Minister, "the panel also approved Special Tourist Visas for foreign tourists starting next month", that would be October 2020 "Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said. After the panel endorsed the measures the Cabinet will likely give them the final green light on Tuesday."

So as you can tell from the specifics of this article, these have yet to actually be promulgated so we have actually yet to actually see the rules and the law related to Special Tourist Visas but hopefully we will be seeing them soon. 

Basically, the thing to take away from this video, this visa, at least as at the time of the making of this video, is a pretty narrow visa. This is not going to be a real broad visa. It is not for folks who have been traveling to Thailand under "normal" for lack of a better term, circumstances in the past. As we have discussed in other videos on this channel, this visa is very narrow. It really is only going to be usable by a relatively small subset of folks who are for example using private jets or charter flights. Also it is quoted at least as of now, there are only 1,200 that are going to be issued in a given year so there is a lot of vetting going on here. This is not a visa that is going to be broadly issued anytime in the near future. 

Now as I have discussed in other videos on this channel, this may be the first step toward a formal normal reopening as they get used to things and folks coming in in a tourist context. We may hopefully see a situation arise in the relatively near future wherein we will see normality start to rear its head again I would hope and that is certainly the hope of many in the tourism sector here in Thailand as it has truly been hard hit by this whole downturn, this whole situation; just everything associated with this shutdown. 

So hopefully we are going to see new tourists here in Thailand sooner rather than later. The first ones presumably coming in on this Special Tourist Visa that will as noted not be issued on a real broad basis but may in fact be the first step on a more broad reopening in the near future.