El Salvador has introduced a fee of $1,000 for passengers arriving from India or Africa. The move is a measure to curb migration to the United States through Central America.
Those traveling with passports from India or more than 50 African countries will now have to pay this fee, according to the El Salvador port authority. , and the funds collected from it will be used to improve the country's main international airport.
El Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele recently met with Brian Nichols, the US Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs, to discuss various issues, including the decision problems of illegal migration. In fiscal year 2023, which ended in September, the United States saw a record 3.2 million migrants encountered by U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, according to reports. Many migrants from Africa and other regions often pass through Central America to reach the United States.
In addition, value added tax (VAT) will be included, bringing the total costs for travelers from affected countries will be $1,130. Reports add that this new fee came into effect on October 23 and was introduced due to increased use of the country's main international airport.
Airlines will be required to provide daily reports to Salvadoran authorities on passengers arriving on the list 57 African countries and India.
Colombian airline Avianca, a major user of the airport, has begun informing travelers that travelers from the listed countries must pay a mandatory fee before boarding flights to El Salvador .
This new tax comes amid a global trend where many countries are considering or have already introduced additional fees or charges for travelers and tourists. Several countries have already adopted this practice, including Thailand, Barcelona, Valencia, Portugal, Belgium, Venice, Austria, Bhutan and France.
Given various problems such as traffic congestion, housing shortage , noise, pollution and litter, some popular European destinations are moving away from traditional tourism promotion strategies and instead advocating anti-tourism measures, discouraging visitors from coming to address these issues.
The World Tourism Organization predicts, that by the end of this decade the number of foreign tourists will exceed a staggering 2 billion. This surge in mass tourism has prompted growing demands for local and national governments to address the issue, leading to the recent introduction of restrictions in some countries.