Thai Government To Close All Duty-Free Shops In Arrival Areas At International Airports

This will affect eight major airports, including Suvarnabhumi International Airport.

Cover image via Hoài Nam/Pexels & shankar s./Flickr

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International travellers visiting Thailand will be unable to shop for duty-free items, as the government plans to close all duty-free shops in arrivals areas at international airports in the country

The Thai government announced that this decision aims to stimulate Thailand's economy by encouraging foreign travellers to purchase more local goods instead.

Duty-free operators have agreed to halt all inbound duty-free shop operations. According to the Bangkok Post, these operators recorded around 3.02 billion baht (RM390 million) in combined sales last year.

That equates to about 570 baht (about RM74) spent per traveller per trip.

The Thai government believes that closing the duty-free shops could redirect this spending towards local markets outside the airports

Currently, inbound travellers can purchase duty-free goods with tax exemptions but must not exceed a total value of 20,000 baht (about RM2,586). They are also limited to 200 cigarettes, 250g each of cigars or tobacco, or a combined total of up to 250g of cigarettes, cigars, and tobacco, and alcoholic beverages up to 1 litre.

The government's decision will affect eight international airports, including Suvarnabhumi, Don Mueang, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Hat Yai, U-tapao, Samui, and Krabi.

The effective date of this policy has not been announced.

In May, the Thai government announced various visas to encourage longer stays in the country:

Some things to keep in mind before your trip to Thailand:

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