Bid to extend tourism insurance
BANGKOK, 26 April 2012: An insurance scheme that offers security incident related cover for tourists visiting the country could be extended beyond the expiry date of 30 June.
Introduced 1 March to offer tourists insurance cover in the case of injury or death linked to a security incident, the Thai Cabinet is expected to extend the period beyond June.
Ministry of Tourism and Sports permanent secretary, Suwat Sidthilaw, said the extension aims to build confidence at a time when there are regional terrorist threats and concern that Thailand could be a target.
“The scheme was supposed to expire at the end of June, but the ministry is asking the Cabinet to extend this advantage to September as it is a plus point that builds confidence.”
Mr Suwat noted that the car bomb in Hat Yai’s Lee Garden Hotel killed three foreigners and in Yala it caused over 400 injuries late last month.
“There are good reasons to keep the insurance scheme alive,” he said.
The scheme only covers foreign tourists. Domestic tourists injured in security incidents such as the one at Hat Yai would gain treatment under a national insurance scheme.
Insurance covers up to US$10,000 per person in the case of death, while it covers the actual costs of hospital treatment in the case of injury. It also compensates financially those who lose limbs or suffer impairment due to a bomb or other kind of security-related incident.
Extending the insurance will cost the ministry Bt100 million in additional budgets.