A Thai tourist has revealed how she successfully got a visa to visit sex-focused tourist hotspots in the country for the first time, despite the risk of being arrested.
A woman from Singapore who has not been named told ABC News how she went to Thailand’s capital Bangkok for her first sex-themed tour.
She said the country’s tourism board told her she was required to have sex-related activities with tourists.
“They told me they would arrest me if I didn’t have sex with tourists, so I didn�t think much of it,” the woman, who requested anonymity, said.
Instead, the woman said she was taken to the police station to be questioned about her sex life.
“I told the officers that they�d just laugh me off the spot and that I was just being too naive,” the unnamed woman said.
After the police questioned her for several hours, they decided she needed a visa.
She had to show proof of the sexual activity, and was given one on her arrival.
But she wasn�t happy.
The woman said Thailand�s sex tourism industry has been a growing concern for travellers and local officials, who say they don�t always comply with laws on protecting minors.
The country is also facing growing concerns from its neighbours, including Australia, for its high rate of child sex tourism.
Australia has taken a leading role in stopping sex tourism, but a report from a government body found that Australia had the highest rate of sex tourism of any country in the world.
More than half of all Australian tourists to Thailand went there in 2016, according to a government-commissioned report, which found that most of the visitors to Thailand were between the ages of 16 and 24.
A similar report by the Australian Government Travel Promotion Centre (AGTPC) found that Australians made up 10.4 per cent of the sex tourism numbers in the Asian country.
But in the same report, it was revealed that Australian visitors to the country were just as likely to be arrested as foreigners, with more than half arrested for sex crimes.
“What happens when a child is caught in Thailand?
Is there a child sex trafficking ring?
Are they trafficked to another country?” the AGTPC report said.”
It’s a huge problem.”
The report also revealed that more than 50 children were exploited each year in the sex industry in Thailand, including some from overseas, although only one child was rescued.
One woman who spoke to ABC News said she had been trafficked from Thailand to Australia for sex work in Thailand and Cambodia, where she lived as a refugee for two years.
“The traffickers are people who just want to be able to have a child to help pay for a trip to Thailand,” the Australian woman said, referring to Thailand, which has become one of the top destinations for sex trafficking.
“These people are really trying to exploit young people.”
The ABC contacted the Australian Embassy in Thailand for comment, but has not yet received a reply.
But some Thai women in the tourist industry are also concerned about how the country is treating tourists and sex workers.
“We don�re not happy about it, but we have to work with it,” said Chiang Khao, a Thai sex worker.
Chiang said she used to have to fight the police every time she went on her sex tours, and has had to take bribes from the police.
“Sometimes I have to do it in the street, because people would not come with me,” she said.
The Australian Government Tourism Promotion Centre said Thailand is one of five countries in the Asia-Pacific region where sex tourism is legal.
But the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) said there is no legal requirement for tourists to register with the government and there is little oversight of how sex tourists are managed or monitored.
The Department of Tourism and Culture said in a statement it is currently working with the Thai government on a comprehensive plan to combat sex tourism in Thailand.