June 15, 2024

Columbus Post

Complete News World

Thailand’s tourism revenue misses target

Photo: epa-efe/Rungroj Yongrit

Photo: epa-efe/Rungroj Yongrit

BANGKOK: The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has lowered its forecast for tourism revenue this year. Instead of the targeted 3.5 trillion baht, the commission now expects to reach only 3 trillion baht. This is due to economic problems in several key markets, particularly China, where flights to Thailand are reaching only 75 percent of their pre-pandemic seat capacity.

As of June 2, 2024, Thailand recorded 14.9 million foreign arrivals, adding a total of 709 billion baht to its coffers. This represents 30 percent of the government’s full-year target of 2.38 trillion baht from international revenue.

Sattan Kunchara Na Ayutthaya, TAT’s Deputy Governor for International Marketing in the Asia and South Pacific region, made the comments at Thailand Travel Mart Plus (TTM+) 2024 in Phang Nga. He emphasized the need for additional incentives, especially in the Chinese market, to achieve the revenue target.

Despite partnership agreements with eight major tourism partners in China, TAT does not have the necessary budgetary resources to effectively strengthen these partnerships.

TAT now relies on creative marketing strategies to promote tourism. Among others, a limited edition of the famous Chinese toy “Labupu” will be introduced, developed in collaboration with “Pop Mart”. The toy is intended to act as an icon to promote Thai attractions and attract the toy’s huge fan base of over 100 million fans worldwide.

Online travel agency partners such as Trip.com and Tongcheng Travel will create special travel packages that build on Labubu’s popularity. In addition, TAT plans to hold roadshows in three emerging Chinese cities – Changsha, Xi’an and Zhengzhou – in July this year to promote direct business ties.

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TAT Regional Director for Marketing in East Asia Suvit Sirivejkul pointed out that constant events and activities are essential to stimulate markets even during the off-season. At least two major events are planned for the next two months, starting with the introduction of Labupu as Thailand’s tourism icon.

A total of 79 Chinese delegates registered for TTM+ this year, the highest number among 425 international buyers from 50 countries. TTM+ is expected to generate business deals worth 3 billion baht, and the next edition is scheduled to be held in Chiang Mai in 2025.