World-renowned tourism destination Thailand is witnessing a huge rush of visitors after the country lifted all travel restrictions which were imposed in view of the COVID-19 crisis. However, the steady arrival of travellers has resulted in long delays at the airport in Thailand’s capital Bangkok for immigration clearance and visa-on-arrival. The situation has been highlighted in social and other media also.
In order to avoid long queues at Bangkok airport, Thailand’s embassy in India has arranged a new facility for travellers from India. Thailand’s ambassador to India Pattarat Hongtong advised Indian tourists to collect their visa from the Thailand embassy or consulate, even though visa-on-arrival was available.
“Overcrowding is natural at any airport in any country when borders are thrown open after a long interval. In fact, the situation isn’t confined to Thailand. We cannot predict the number of travellers arriving at the airports,” the ambassador told the news agency ANI.
Meanwhile, Thailand authorities have also increased the strength of the staff at Bangkok airport considering the huge increase in passenger arrivals.
Incidentally, tourist arrivals spiralled upwards after Thailand withdrew restrictions such as COVID-19 vaccination certificate, test results for the disease and other pandemic-related rules some time ago.
E-visa on arrival
Among the longest queues at Bangkok airport are formed at the immigration counter. However, tourists to Thailand can utilize the ‘EVOA’ (e-visa on arrival) service offered by VFS Global, a visa outsourcing firm, to avoid this issue. Travellers holding an EVOA can complete immigration procedures quickly at all airports in Thailand. Under the stipulations in place, applications submitted through ‘Express e-visa on arrival’ service would be cleared within 24 hours.
3.78 million tourists
According to official data, Thailand received around 3.78 million tourists from January 1 to August 17 this year. A majority of these travellers belonged to three countries – Malaysia, India and Singapore.
In order to attract more visitors from India, Thailand organised an ‘Amazing Thailand Fest 2022’ in New Delhi from November 25 to 27 this year.