Sorting out your Thai baht, arranging travellers' cheques and trying to avoid credit card charges is usually all part of a holiday in Thailand. But paying for goods on Thailand holidays in 2012 just got a whole lot easier thanks to a new debit card specially designed for tourists.
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has teamed up with Krungthai Bank to issue the Miracle Thailand Card, a special debit card for foreign visitors. The main benefit is that the card reduces the need for travellers to carry cash during their holiday in the country.
In addition, it offers extra value in the form of discounts at leading shopping malls and tourist destinations. Travellers will also be able to enjoy medical and life insurance coverage in case of an accident
Launching the card, TAT governor Suraphon Svetasreni explained how it is part of the Miracle Year of Amazing Thailand 2012, during which three important royal birthdays will be marked."The Miracle Thailand Card will help ensure visitors who come to Thailand during this auspicious year enjoy greater convenience and have fewer worries while they are here," he said.
Tourists will be able to use the Miracle Thailand Card to buy goods and withdraw cash from ATMs anywhere in Thailand without any charges. Special discounts will also be offered at a number of top shopping and visitor destinations, including The Mall, Emporium, Siam Paragon, Paradise Park, MBK Center, King Power Duty Free, Siam Park, Siam Niramit, and Safari World.
Tourists simply purchase the card when they arrive at Suvarnabhumi Airport at the ATTA counter, or at any Krungthai Bank Currency Exchange booth.
The basic card costs just 100 baht (£2), which includes seven-day personal accident insurance of up to 10,000 baht for outpatient treatment, 500,000 baht for inpatient treatment, and life insurance of one million baht.
It can be topped up anytime at any Krungthai Bank Currency Exchange booth up to a maximum value of 30,000 baht, while the period of insurance may also be extended.