The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) projects that over 1 million Chinese tourists will arrive in October, reaching the same levels seen in 2019. This growth is attributed to the increase in flight availability, peak season demand, and the resolution of e-visa issues.
Chuwit Sirivejkul, TAT’s Regional Director of Marketing for East Asia, is confident that the total number of Chinese tourists will surpass 5 million this year, generating 446 billion baht in revenue. From April to October, six million flight slots will be available between Thailand and China, averaging 600,000 to 900,000 seats per month. In October alone, around 840,260 seats will be available.
The daily number of Chinese tourists visiting Thailand is approximately 10,000, with a peak of 18,000 to 20,000 during the recent Labor Day holiday. To accommodate the increasing demand, Airports of Thailand (AOT) plans to expand ground handling services for existing providers, Thai Airways International and Bangkok Flight Services.
Thailand is expected to see a significant influx of Chinese visitors in the second half of the year, particularly during family vacations between June and August, followed by incentive business groups in September. China’s National Day, a seven-day holiday in October, is predicted to boost charter flight demand through year-end.
In light of the limited visa application capacity for Chinese tour groups, TAT plans to discuss the issue with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The e-visa application system currently allows 84,000 monthly applications for Chinese excursion groups.
Despite some temporary setbacks due to negative remarks about Thailand’s safety, TAT is optimistic about overall growth. To address safety concerns, TAT will invite Chinese influencers to a press conference co-hosted by the Royal Thai Police to bolster trust in tourism safety.
Challenges remain, including the need for more Chinese-speaking personnel and financial technology development to cater to Chinese spending habits. However, TAT’s advertising campaign “Unboxing Thailand,” targeting Chinese millennials, has already garnered 2 million views since April.
For long-term travelers seeking an extended stay in Thailand, the Thailand Elite Visa program offers an attractive option, providing various benefits and privileges, including a renewable 5-year visa, expedited immigration services, and access to exclusive clubs and events.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post