[UPDATE-1] Cabinet approves 40 per cent discount for hotel rooms, domestic plane tickets, and car rentals; travel bubble talks underway while government greenlights further aid measures

The cabinet has approved three packages to promote domestic tourism on Tuesday; however, details on international travel bubble negotiations are still inconclusive.

The three packages include:

  1. Roa Pai Theaw Gun: A 40 per cent discount on all participating hotel rooms for Thai citizens with a limit of 3,000 baht worth of discounts per night for no more than five nights (15,000 baht per person.) The package also comes with an allowance of 600 baht per night for no more than five nights (3,000 baht per person.)
  1. Theaw Pan Sook: A 40 per cent discount for domestic plane tickets and car rental services for Thai citizens with a limit of 1,000 baht per person. The government has negotiated with participating low-cost airline carriers to set a fixed price for round trip tickets at no more than 2,500 baht per ticket.
  2. Gum Lung Jai: A complimentary three days and two nights travel package that comes with a 2,000 baht allowance per person for 1.2 million medical staff, such as village health volunteers and local hospital officials.

The packages will be in effect between July-October, using a budget of 22 billion baht.

Citizens that are eligible for the discounts must be over 20 years old. They can register for them via Krung Thai’s mobile banking application to receive the electronic coupons.

Travel bubble 

Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul said after the cabinet meeting on Tuesday that Thailand has started travel bubble negotiations with China and Singapore. 

However, the details of the negotiations are still inconclusive.

The government said earlier that international travelling within the travel bubble will begin in the third quarter of 2020.

When asked about the second wave of coronavirus outbreak in Beijing, Anutin said the development will not derail the travel bubble talks between Thailand and China but the Thai government is reassessing the situation there. 

There will now be limited flights for business and official travel purposes to Singapore without a quarantine for Chinese citizens from specific cities in China.

Other countries that have similar agreements include Denmark and Norway, and Australia and New Zealand. 

Singapore, South Korea and Canada are also in negotiations with Australia and New Zealand at the moment.

Other cabinet approvals

  1. The bill for the 2021 fiscal budget has an estimated expenditure of 3.3 trillion baht and an estimated income of 2.77 trillion baht. This could contribute to a fiscal deficit of 523 billion baht. The first hearing of the bill in parliament is set for June 24-25.  
  2. Increased the loan limit from 1 million baht to 1.2 million baht for the “One Million House” campaign. Under the scheme, citizens who earn 25,000 baht per month or less could apply for loans with a flat interest rate of 3 per cent over the first five years from the Government Housing Bank. The budget for the project has also been increased. 
  3. More relief measures to help the 8.7 million people in four of the most affected groups that have yet to receive any financial help from the government.

This includes:

  • About 1.6 million social security insurers that have not received prior compensations from other schemes with a budget of 3.49 billion baht.
  • Abound 302,000 informal workers that failed to receive cash handouts from the 5,000-baht scheme with a budget of 906 million baht.
  • About 1.3 million young kids between 1-6 years old that are living in poor households, 4 million elderly people and 1.3 million disabled persons with a budget of 20 billion baht.
  • A cash handout scheme for 130,000 more farmers.

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