Whether you read English, Japanese, French or Thai, you pay 5 baht for the use of the toilet. If you read Thai, you only need to pay 2 baht. This is called double pricing and most Thais do not see a problem with it. Their argument? Farangs are richer. A self-fulfilling prophecy? China abolished official double pricing in 1997.
Entrance fees for the country’s most popular national parks will increase 150% for Thais due to rising park management costs, the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation announced yesterday.
The new rates will be imposed at 29 “Grade A” national parks and will be effective from Oct 1 onward, said Vithya Hongvienchan, director of the National Parks Office.
Under the new rate, the admission fee for Thai adults will increase from 40 baht to 100 baht, while admission fees for Thai children will jump from 20 baht to 50 baht.
Park entrance fees for foreign adults will increase from 400 baht to 500 baht and from 200 baht to 300 baht for foreign children.
Eight parks in the North, four in the Northeast, three in the East, four in the West, and 10 in the South will be affected by the new fee.
Among the affected national parks are Doi Inthanon in Chiang Mai, Khao Yai (Nakhon Ratchasima), Sai Yok (Kanchanaburi), Kaeng Krachan (Phetchaburi), Koh Chang (Trat), Phu Kradueng (Loei), and Similan (Phangnga).
The admission fees at the remaining 116 parks will stay the same, Mr Vithya added. He said insufficient budgets for park management, wastewater treatment, forest protection, and maintenance of tourism facilities had forced the department to raise admission fees.