BANGKOK: Siam Commercial Bank (SCB), The Mall Group, and Visa – with support from the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) – have announced the launch of a new SCB M Visa prepaid tourist card for foreign tourists who can use it for cashless travel and shopping when in Thailand.

To celebrate the launch, the first 1,000 customers who apply will receive vouchers worth THB 500 when spending THB 2,000 or more at The Mall Group’s department stores from June 1 to December 31, 2019.

Information and applications are available at the Tourist Lounge at the Emporium, Emquartier, Paragon Department Store, and SCB exchange booths at Don Mueang International Airport.

K. Siripakorn Cheawsamoot, TAT Deputy Governor for Digital Research and Development, said the new card supports the Thai government’s national e-payment policy to transform Thailand into a cashless society, while strengthening and promoting the country’s tourism industry.

“The government strongly believes the payment industry will play an important role in the development of Thailand’s tourism industry. Traveler’s needs are inherently diverse, so driving the adoption and usage of digital payments is the key,” Mr. Siripakorn added.

In addition to greater convenience, international security standards and confidence to spend during their time in Thailand, cardholders will also benefit from a number of privileges from more than 53 million Visa-accepting merchant locations in more than 200 countries around the world, according to SCB.

Privileges are also offered at participating vendors nationwide in Thailand, including airlines, hotels, spas, restaurants, shops, tourist attractions, and other services. All spending will earn accumulated “M Points”, which can be used for additional discounts and other privileges when shopping in Thailand.

The promotion targets 50,000 SCB M Visa prepaid tourist card users within one year with spending exceeding 600 million Baht (US$18.8 million).

The SCB M Visa prepaid tourist card is valid for five years, allowing cardholders to enjoy special privileges during every visit to Thailand throughout the validity period. There is no sign up, annual, or re-issuance fee, and cards can be topped-up for a minimum of 100 Baht at any of The Mall Group’s customer service counters.

The card also offers additional privileges when using accumulated points for discounts at The Mall Group department stores. The offers form part of the results from The Mall Group’s research on tourists’ shopping behavior to create marketing plans to persuade them to return to Thailand, which will help generate more revenue for the country.

Cardholders are also eligible for 5 to 10% discounts at all The Mall Group department stores and Gourmet Markets, and up to 50% in discounts at shops located within one of its shopping complexes, including M privileges from leading partners nationwide.