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Thailand’s Tourism Expected To Exceed Pre-Covid Levels

Published: January 23, 2023 at 5:58 pm

chinese tour group

The Chinese government announced that it would be resuming group excursions to 20 countries, including Thailand, starting February 6. This announcement was met with a variety of reactions, with some welcoming the positive news and others expressing concern over the potential spread of Covid-19.

Anutin Charnvirakul, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Public Health expressed his belief that China’s new tourism strategy would be beneficial to Thailand’s economy and tourism. Deputy government spokesman Traisuree Taisaranakul also assured the public that Thailand would be able to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Traisuree added that the outbound group tours from China would begin gradually in a trial phase with strict regulations for both Chinese tourists and tour companies.

The Thai government is confident that any increase in Chinese group tours will not have a major impact on the current Covid-19 restrictions.

Ms. Traisuree highlighted that Chinese tour operators must strictly adhere to the Covid-19 guidelines at the destinations they visit. Chinese tourists, on the other hand, are advised to undergo a Covid-19 test prior to their departure and must be aware of their health and safety when traveling.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, recently expressed his positive outlook regarding the Chinese government’s decision to make Thailand the first country to welcome Chinese visitors on experimental outbound group tours.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has recently announced that, due to the comeback of Chinese tourists, its tourism revenues for this year are expected to exceed the figures recorded in 2019 prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. It has been reported that in the previous year, nearly 11 million Chinese tourists visited Thailand, and their overall spending amounted to THB 531 billion baht.

On average, each tourist stayed for 7.8 days and spent THB 6,118 baht per day, or about THB 47,723 baht per person per trip.

In order to further encourage Chinese tourists to visit Thailand, the TAT has launched a tourism campaign titled “Two Lands, One Heart”, which is being executed by five TAT offices located in Beijing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Kunming, and Shanghai.

It is expected that at least 5 million Chinese visitors will visit Thailand this year.

The Thai government has responded favorably to China’s reopening, making Thailand an ideal destination for Chinese visitors. According to TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn, it is estimated that over 500,000 overseas visitors will come to Thailand between January 19 and January 27, representing a 1,622% increase compared to the same time during the previous Chinese New Year.

The core target market for the Lunar New Year will be mainland Chinese visitors, with TAT anticipating 29,400 of them. The governor also added that in 2023, the tourism revenue will see a modest comeback.

Before the arrival of group tours, some prominent tourist spots in Bangkok, such as Yaowarat and the Erawan temple, had a limited number of mainland Chinese tourists.

The monk of Wat Mangkon Kamalawat, Bangkok’s largest Chinese Buddhist temple, Achan Chen Jiefu, said that there are only a few mainland Chinese tourists. He further mentioned that although the Lunar New Year is celebrated widely in China, they are not likely to visit during this period. However, he is hopeful that the upcoming Songkran Festival in March and April may encourage more people to travel.

The receptionist at the Erawan Shrine, Chookiat Kaewfa Charoen, also said that there has not been a significant influx of mainland Chinese visitors to the shrine. He is confident that the situation will improve next month.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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