Tourism Authority of Thailand targets crypto holders

19 Feb 2021

Thailand’s tourism authority is looking at targeting cryptocurrency holders from Japan to revive the country’s tourism industry that has been devastated by the Covid crisis.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is aiming to make the country the first to welcome crypto holders with open arms, especially those from Japan, which it sees as a regional hub of crypto activity.

The tourism authority has carried out a feasibility study on introducing cryptocurrency payments at tourism destinations, Cointelegraph reports, and plans to hold talks with the Bank of Thailand and tourism operators such as hotels to get ready for new tourism practices.

Since Q1 2020, when countries began closing their borders due to the coronavirus pandemic, Thailand has been targeting crypto-holding tourists.

According to a report in the Bangkok Post, TAT governor Yuthasak Supasorn said cryptocurrency could hold the key to attracting the high rollers: “If we can prepare the country for the cryptocurrency market, it will help attract more opportunities from high-spending tourists, especially the young and wealthy generations.”

He went on to add that crypto usage needs to comply with central bank regulations, with measures in place to deter money laundering.

Moreover, the TAT governor suggested Tesla CEO Elon Musk may want to visit Thailand, after his company recently bought $1.5 billion worth of Bitcoin: “Even Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla and a crypto influencer, might be interested in visiting Thailand.”

However, although Thailand is open to crypto trading, with several exchanges in the country, there are only limited places that accept cryptocurrencies as a means of payment.