Tourist Tax Reduced
The Royal Government of Bhutan is pleased to announce additional incentives and policy measures to boost its tourism sector, introducing a 50% reduction on its tourism levy, known as the daily Sustainable Development Fee (SDF). Bhutan’s commitment to high value, low volume tourism is underscored by its SDF, which is now USD 100 per person, per night (down from USD 200 per person per night). The new, lower levy will be in effect until September 2027.
The change was made in view of the important role of the tourism sector in generating employment; earning foreign exchange; realizing the potential for spillover benefits for ancillary industries; boosting overall economic growth; and funding important environmental, social and infrastructure projects.
The new incentives and measures shall consist of the following:
- A fifty per cent (50%) reduction will be granted on the prevailing SDF of USD 200 for US Dollar-paying guests visiting Bhutan. The effective SDF with the discount will be USD 100 per person per night for US Dollar paying tourists.
- In addition, a fifty per cent (50%) reduction on the SDF shall be granted on the rates applied to children aged between 6 and 12 years for US Dollar-paying children visiting as tourists. The effective SDF with the discount for children will be USD 50 per person per night for US Dollar-paying tourists. Children who have not yet turned six years old are eligible to visit Bhutan without paying any SDF.
- The 24 hours SDF waiver for tourists staying in the border towns shall continue.
The above incentives will come into effect from Friday, 1 September 2023 and shall remain effective for four years until 31 August 2027.
Any guests who have already paid the SDF for their upcoming visit to Bhutan are eligible for refunds on any excess SDF amounts paid.
Since January 2023, Bhutan has received almost 60,000 guests, which matches what was forecasted for 2023 arrivals. Bhutan’s main source markets are India, the United States, UK, Australia, Germany, Malaysia, France, Singapore, Vietnam and China, among others. It is expected that Bhutan’s tourism numbers will rebound to pre-pandemic figures in 2025.
SDF fees are paid by guests at the time of visa application. Visas can be applied for at the Department of Tourism’s website: https://bhutan.travel/visa