Bangkok, 31 July, 2020 – Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, today announced its cooperation with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to expand the acceptance of digital payment locations in Bangkok and five major tourist cities across the nation. This collaboration is an effort to support the country’s economic recovery, especially with the domestic tourism industry while ensuring the safety and well-being of consumers and businesses.
Under the cooperation, Visa will be working with financial institutions to support businesses partners in upgrading their payment acceptance service to card payments. For businesses that are already accepting card payments, they can also upgrade their EDC terminal to accept contactless payments, including contactless card, smartphone and wearables. Visa will also be working with banks to provide training for cashiers to ensure the payment acceptance procedure is compliant with the Safety and Health Administration (SHA) standards.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said: “We have created the Safety and Health Administration (SHA) certification program, in collaboration with the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, Ministry of Public Health, Board of Trade of Thailand, and Thai tourism operators to regain tourist confidence and position Thailand as a preferred global tourism destination. Under the ‘new normal’, Thailand’s tourism industry will experience many changes that will be introduced, including cashless payments for products and services.”
Mr. Suripong Tantiyanon, Visa Country Manager, Thailand said: “Tourism is one of Thailand’s growth engines, so Visa is committed to helping stakeholders in the sector adapt to the post COVID-19 situation, recover and grow. We are pleased to be able to leverage our technological expertise, experience and network to support the country’s economic recovery while accelerating the digital transformation.”
According to Visa’s latest study on consumer behavior and Thailand’s payment of the ‘new normal’, three in five Thais (61 percent) are forming cashless habits, preferring to pay with cards or through mobile applications over cash. At the same time, the way people intend to pay in the future is consistent across the globe, with consumers in Thailand (69 percent), the Asia Pacific (75 percent) and around the world (66 percent) choosing to stick with electronic payments after the current situation is over.
The first phase will begin with supporting businesses in the Sukhumvit area accepting card and cashless payments. The second phase will expand to cover five major tourist destinations across the country comprising Chiang Mai, Phuket, Pattaya, Samui and Hua Hin by the end of 2020. All participating hotels, shops and restaurants will be easily identified by the public via the Visa and SHA signage.
 Kantar COVID-19 Barometer, fieldwork 27-31 March 2020. The study collated consumer data across 40 markets globally and 11 markets in the Asia-Pacific, including Thailand, combined with AI-based web monitoring of what people are saying and searching on the Internet.
The preceding is a press release from the Thai Tourism Authority. Photo credit Aboutthailandliving.com