Lockdown Travel Pass Fees Waived Under New Notice

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Travel Passes to be Issued-During Lockdown in Laos

A new notice issued by the Prime Minister’s Office has officially prohibited the collection of administrative fees for the issuance of lockdown ‘travel passes’ allowing residents to move between districts.

Confusion and dissatisfaction ensued last week when a notice issued by authorities in Saysettha District, Vientiane Capital, suggested that not only would residents require a special lockdown travel pass or card for travel between villages and districts, but that an administration fee of LAK 30,000 would be collected to finance the scheme.

A notice issued by the Government Office cancelling the issuance of lockdown travel passes
A notice issued by the Government Office canceling the issuance of lockdown travel passes

Prior to cancellation, village chiefs were to collect LAK 30,000 per travel card issued (two travel pass cards would be issued per family). Replacement cards would be charged at LAK 50,000. A further fee of LAK 10,000 would be collected from each household in support of police and military checkpoints set up around the city.

After complaints by residents, the collection of fees was canceled in yesterday’s notice, which instructed the Mayor of Vientiane to inform district and village heads.

The prevalence of travel passes or cards remains unclear, with issuance apparently at the discretion of village authorities.

Laos entered full lockdown on March 30, and has prohibited the sale of alcohol doing the Lao New Year period.

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