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Eased visa treatment for Thai nationals well-received

Eased visa treatment for Thai nationals well-received

Taiwan's recent relaxation on visa applications for high-end tour operators in Thailand has generated a good response, Taiwan's representative office in Thailand said Wednesday.

According to the office, the program has contributed to an increase in applications by Thai nationals seeking entry to Taiwan since its launch Nov. 1.

The office said it has received applications from 800 tourists in 40 groups, while the momentum could last into the New Year holiday period.

The visa treatment, which eases restrictions on what the Taiwan Tourism Bureau defines as "high-quality" tourist groups from Thailand, Vietnam, India, Indonesia and the Philippines, is aimed at increasing the number of visitors from Southeast Asia.

Yuan Kai-chih, section chief of the bureau's International Affairs Division, said the quality of tour operators is defined by past experiences between them and the bureau.

"We review how the operators have been performing, including how many tourists they have sent to Taiwan and if they have violated any laws," Yuan said.

The program allows tourists who opt for trips organized by those tour operators easier document processing during their visa application and also waives their application fee, Yuan said. However, the type of visa they receive are no different to those issued to regular tourists.

Thai travel agents said they hope that Taiwan will further ease travel limits for the country, citing examples of Japan's visa-waiver program for Thai tourists, which has boosted travel exchanges. (By Liu Te-chang and Lee Hsin-Yin)

Updated : 2021-09-19 17:33 GMT+08:00