Siam Dive n Sail Phuket Thailand

dive@siamdivers.com

Thailand Travel Advice: Diving Fees

Current Thai National Park Fees

All visitors to Thailand's national parks are--as of November 2001 then revised in November, 2006--required to pay an entry fee of 400 THB per person. These are similar to fees you'll find in other countries which are struggling to maintain the financial health of their national parks.

Divers are also required to pay a user fee in many marine national parks of 200 THB per day. These fees currently apply and are enforced in both the Similan Islands National Park and the Surin Islands National Park. Fees are collected at Hin Daeng, Koh Ha and Koh Rok, part of the Koh Lanta National Park system and the fees are usually 400 THB per day. Other marine national parks such as the ones around Krabi (Phi Phi Islands), fees are not always collected. Welcome to Thailand. The amount will vary according to how the boat plans their trips and where the collection is being done. We would appreciate it if you would have these fees ready in exact change, cash only. This saves time and hassle, and gets you underwater where you belong, faster.

Myanmar Travel Advice: Diving Fees

You can only dive in the Mergui Archipelago in Mynamar through boats operated from Thailand. Currently there are no dive boats based in Myanmar. On the north coast above Yangon, there are some times some diving being offered, but it's hard to get to and the information you can find is unreliable.

Dive boats make special arrangements to enter the Mergui Archipelago, which is a part f Burma or Myanmar. We do not use the same procedures as you would if you actually entered Burma by plane or overland.

A Myanmar Visa is not required.

Mergui (Burma) entry fees are currently between $200 and $250 US per person, per entry (not per day) in clean, crisp, new bills. The Burmese set this fee, not us, but it does vary slightly between boats as different itineraries have different fees.

This fee is required in US cash only, new bills please (no checks, credit cards, or other currencies are accepted for this fee). This is the policy of the Burmese, not our policy. Please buy the US dollars before you arrive in Thailand. Foreign currencies are difficult if not impossible to buy here without a lot of work and wasted holiday time.

They also require:

  • Full name as written in your passport
  • Passport number, nationality, and place of issue
  • Date of issue and date of expiry
  • Date of birth
  • Gender

Please email one passport sized picture and one scan of the picture page to us upon confirmation of your booking.

Contact us or your travel agency for more information. If you are are from a country which requires you to have a Thai visa, or a "Visa on Arrival" (not the same as the free 30 day automatic entry most countries are eligible for), then please make sure you get a double-entry visa for Thailand as the immigration in Ranong does not issue any type of visa. They are only an exit and entry point. For a list of countries, please go here. If you do not see your country on this list, you MUST apply for two Thai visas to join a trip to Burma.

In addition, the following MUST be brought with you:

  • TWO copies of the front page of your passport.
  • TWO recent color passport-size photographs (Polaroid's are fine and are easily obtained here if you have time prior to departure. If you are arriving the same day as your boat departs, please get this done in advance).

Note: These rules change from time to time. Most of the time we can sort paperwork, but not cash, out upon your arrival. Please have the above paperwork ready in a clean envelope separate from your other travel documents. Please have the US cash in this envelope as well, exact change and new bills. This makes our entry and exit procedures much quicker and easier, so you get more diving in. The officials are, well, rather official acting. So, please have patience with the process and be polite. We do our best to make it as painless as possible! Thanks for your cooperation.

 

Thai Visa

If you are planning a dive trip to Mergui, you actually check out of and back into Thailand at Ranong and Kawthaung. If you are are from a country which requires you to have a Thai visa, or a "Visa on Arrival" (not the same as the free 30 day automatic entry people from most countries are eligible for), then please make sure you get a double-entry visa for Thailand as the immigration in Ranong does not issue any type of visa. They are only an exit and entry point, there is no embassy there. It is your responsibility to make sure you have the correct visa or you will not be allowed to reenter Thailand!

Note: These rules change from time to time. Most of the time we can sort paperwork, but not cash, out upon your arrival. Please have the above paperwork ready in a clean envelope separate from your other travel documents. Please have the US cash in this envelope as well, exact change and new bills. This makes our entry and exit procedures much quicker and easier, so you get more diving in. The officials are, well, rather official acting. So, please have patience with the process and be polite. We do our best to make it as painless as possible! Thanks for your cooperation.

Money Exchange

The Thai baht very closely follows the US dollar fluctuations, so this is generally the best foreign currency to carry, but check with your bank before departure. Travelers cheques will give you better rates. Changing money is easy except in extremely remote areas (where you probably don't need much money anyway!). Credit cards are widely accepted and dive centers normally do not add a service charge, though many hotels and other shops will. Recently, the Thai Government floated the baht, and at this time it hovers around 34 baht to the US Dollar. Even though at some levels, prices will be cheaper all over Thailand, keep in mind that those businesses that use imported products (such as dive equipment and foreign staff) will have to adjust their prices. ATM machines are now very common everywhere, so sometimes this will be easier. Just be sure to inform your bank that you are traveling so when you try and use your ATM card for the first time in Thailand, the bank doesn't block it. Same thing with credit cards.




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