Before 2022, the tourism policy in Bhutan was based on the Minimum Daily Package Rate (MDPR) system, which required tourists to pay a minimum daily rate of US$200-250 per person per day, depending on the season. This fee included accommodation, meals, transportation, and the services of a licensed Bhutanese tour guide. The MDPR was intended to promote high-value, low-impact tourism and to ensure that tourism contributed to Bhutan’s sustainable development goals.
However, in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic severely impacted the tourism industry in Bhutan and around the world. To support the industry, the government of Bhutan introduced a series of measures, including a reduction in the MDPR and the introduction of a Sustainable Development Fee (SDF) for regional and international tourists.