Visiting Angkor Wat

By | Category: Travel destinations
image of Angkor Wat in Cambodia

Angkor Wat

From February 1, 2017, the cost of a one-day pass to enter the most visited tourist attraction in Cambodia, will increase to $US37, from the current $US20. Ticket prices will, for a three-day pass, go up to $US62 from the current $US40 and a week-long visit pass will cost $US72, up from the current $US60. Children under 12 will still be admitted for nothing.

If you have booked and paid for a holiday in Cambodia which includes a trip to Angor Wat check to see whether you will be charged the extra amount. Some tour operators say they will bear the cost, some will not.

In Cambodia itself, nationals are unaffected because they get in free. Where Cambodia may be affected is by seeing a downturn in visitor numbers as a result of these price increases.

Certainly local tour operators and tourism officials generally are up in arms and are wondering why there has been such a steep increase. They would like to know how the additional money raised would be used since, at the moment, the only thing that has been said is that $US2 of the additional money raised would be donated to Kantha Bopha, a Swiss-owned children’s hospital that provides free treatment.

Where would the other $US15 from a single ticket go?  Into government coffers? According to the Phnom Pen Post, Luu Meng, co-chair of the Government-Private Sector Working Group on Tourism, said “When price goes up like this it affects visitors’ feelings, so we need to show them the quality products and services they will receive from the increased price. For instance, we should give them a reason, like we will guarantee to provide better hygiene at the site and remove all the rubbish along the entrance roads.”

Last year, about 2.1 million tourists visited Angkor Wat, the ancient temple complex near Siem Reap and, of those, about 1.1 million are people from overseas. That latter number hardly rose from the preceding year and that may be why tourism officials in the area are concerned.

But then, if people from the UK and mainland Europe travel to Cambodia they will have paid a lot for the airfare and accommodation.  An increase of between  $US17 and $US22 is not going to worry them, as probably, a trip to Cambodia is something they will only do one in a lifetime.

How those overseas visitors report back to the friends and what they put on social media is more important as that will influence other people as to whether they should holiday in Cambodia or not.



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