For guests staying more than four nights, Bhutan has decreased its tourism charge. Tourists who purchase in US dollars are the only ones who qualify for the discount.
The action is being taken to increase tourism and support the pandemic-related visitor population recovery.
Since it reopened in 2022 after a two-year closure due to Covid, Bhutan has the highest Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) per tourist of USD 200 per night.
The price had previously been set at a still-hefty USD 65 per person every night for the previous three decades.
The money from the SDF is used to safeguard Bhutan’s natural landscapes and offset travellers’ carbon footprints in an effort to dissuade cheap travellers and draw wealthy visitors who care about the environment.
Travellers who choose to stay longer will, however, pay less under the new regulations. From June to the end of 2024, visitors can extend their stay by an additional four days without having to pay any additional daily fees. Those who remain for 12 days may do so without paying any more SDF for the entire month.
According to Dorji Dhradhul, DG of the Department of Tourism, “tourism can help our economy to grow faster if more tourists stay longer in Bhutan,” according to The Straits Times.