THAILAND is a popular choice for tropical holidays but there is one major change being considered that will impact all tourists.
Tourism officials in Thailand are calling for mandatory travel insurance for all visitors to the country.
The push has come in a bid to recover losses incurred from unpaid medical bills.
As tourist numbers surge, there has been a spike in uninsured holidaymakers needing medical treatment.
According to authorities, many of these travellers can’t afford to pay for their treatment and often leave hospital without paying at all.
While visitors don’t need a visa to enter Thailand, it’s likely these travel insurance documents would have to be checked by immigration officers on arrival.
This is not the first time Thailand has considered enforcing the compulsory rule.
It will need to be passed by cabinet in order to be approved.
Jaturon Phakdeewanit, director of the Tourism Safety and Security Standards in Thailand, said: “We need to push this through as soon as possible because the problem is becoming more serious.”
The tourism body claims unpaid medical bills are costing Thailand at least three billion baht (£68 million) each year.
Travel operators are preparing their proposal for cabinet as they try to work out the best strategy to implement it.
Tourism is a lucrative industry in Thailand, with 14 million people visiting since the start of this year alone.
That equates to £15.9m in revenue for the Southeast Asian nation.
Thailand holidays: The nation relies heavily on tourism which has brought in £15.9m this year.
Tourists flock to Thailand primarily for its stunning beaches, but there might be limited time left to see them.
Disastrous erosion threatens the iconic sandy shores and according to the Transport Department, nowhere near enough is being done.
Mr Chivapruck said: “If we don’t do anything, there will be no attractive beaches left.” -AP
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