Pattaya is considering charging tourists to visit Koh Larn to help pay for over-run resort island’s upkeep.
City Council Chairman Anan Ankanawisan led the Feb. 23 discussion on imposing fees that would be used to clear Koh Larn’s garbage backlog, fix its sewage system and bolster its water supply.
Councilman Choluek Chotekamjorn proposed that everyone arriving on Koh Larn pay a fee that would be used to maintain the island’s infrastructure, rather than depend on Pattaya’s small and slowly allocated budget.
He argued that other Thai tourist resorts, such as the Phi Phi Islands, charge 20-100 baht per visitor.
The difference, however, is that the Phi Phi Islands and other places that charge visitors, such as the Similan Islands, are national parks. Koh Larn is not.
Mayor Anan Charoenchasri suggested that a fee could have a negative impact on tourism.
Tour guides are already responding that they would NOT take customers to Koh Larn if there were a fee, because it isn’t worth paying for.
The council decided to form a committee to determine which would be more detrimental to tourism: A per-visitor fee or an island overflowing in garbage with backed up sewers and not enough water to drink. – Pattaya Mail
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