The fallout from the Russian invasion of Ukraine is being felt in Thailand with the number of Russian tourists dropping by more than half and those in the country facing difficulties with money, travel and immigration.
Thailand had been welcoming 600-700 Russian and Ukrainian tourists daily under the “Test & Go” entry scheme since Feb. 1. But after the invasion and resulting international sanctions, that number has dropped to about 300 a day.
With Visa and Mastercard cutting off Russian cards and rendering them useless overseas and airlines either canceling flights or being banned from Russian and European airspace, that number is seen dropping to zero soon.
Chattan Kunjara Na Ayudhya, the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s deputy governor for Europe, Africa, Middle East and Americas, said Russia was among the top 10 nations visiting Thailand for many years, especially since this year.
He said many kinds of aid to help stranded tourists with their accommodations and finances were discussed at Tuesday’s Cabinet meeting.
Chatthan said commercial flights from Russia are still available. But the number of visitors dropped precipitously after the ruble crashed following the west’s imposition of sanctions.