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Tourism Authority of Thailand Plans New Tourism Targets

Published: October 8, 2021 at 9:37 pm

Ang Thong marine park

The tourism sector is projected to hit the lowest numbers this year with a total income of THB 328 billion, but it will bounce back in 2022 and achieve 80% of its 2019 goal in 2023, as per the Tourism Authority of Thailand

International travel restrictions due to COVID-19 have shaken the country, with only 100,000 incoming tourists anticipated this year, down from 6.7 million last year, according to TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn.

The TAT Governor expects that tourism in the country would recover 50% of their 2019 goal in 2022 and an additional 30% increase in 2023 as Thailand works to recruit higher-spending travelers.

Nevertheless, domestic travel is projected to reach 60 million by the end of 2021, down by 34% from last year. Since 2020, the tourism sector has been impacted by COVID-19 outbreaks, most especially around Songkran.

However, the situation has significantly improved this month, leading the government to resume 2 stimulus programs, Tour Teaw Thai and We Travel Together from October 15 to January 1. The latter provides financial assistance to tourists.

As a result, overall income is expected to reach THB 328 billion this year, down by 60% from 2020, Mr. Yuthasak added.

Despite the initial success of sandbox programs in places like Phuket, the reopening to foreign tourists is projected to generate just THB 8.25 billion this year, with the majority of revenue coming in the 4th quarter.

Governor Yuthasak Supasorn told reports that foreign revenue tourists accounted for two-thirds of tourism revenue. This is the primary reason the government is speeding up the reopening process since domestic tourism cannot rescue the sector on its own.

“While numbers for this year may be discouraging for the tourism sector, we expect to improve our position in 2022 by recovering at least 50% of revenue from 2019” he added.

In 2019, Thailand welcomed 40 million foreign tourists.

Gov. Yuthasak said that officials would attempt to compensate for lost revenue by tripling the amount foreign visitors spend each person to THB 82,576, up from THB 49,700 before the pandemic.

This goal complements the government’s strategy of doubling down on sustainable, environment-friendly, and value-added tourism.

Apart from Samui and Phuket, the 2 main pilot regions, any province may apply for a sandbox program once it achieves a vaccination rate of at least 70%

Mr. Yuthasak mentioned that recently reopened regions would be designated Blue Zones, allowing them to enforce their own eased safety standards.

Source: Bangkok Post

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