TravelNewsAsia.com
Wed, 29 March 2017

Thailand Reports Q1 2017 Tourism Revenue of US$20.9 Billion

The Tourism Authority of Thailand has said that it expects to finish the first quarter of 2017 right on target with tourism revenue of 734 billion Baht (US$20.9 billion), up 9% over the same period of 2016.

The growth momentum is anticipated to continue through to the second quarter with an 11% year-on-year increase on revenue to 630 billion Baht (US$18 billion), including 16.6 billion Baht (US$474 million) revenue targeted from tourism spending during the next month's five-day Songkran holiday.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), said, In the first quarter, weve seen healthy growth from all source markets, and so we expect this growth momentum to continue into the second quarter. This expectation is based on a number of factors. Thailand will host the WTTC Global Summit 2017 from 26-27 April in Bangkok, and the Destination Wedding Planners Congress 2017 from 2-4 May in Phuket. TAT will also enhance its marketing efforts in China through a series of roadshow events that focus on the luxury, health and wellness, and new markets as well as through celebrity marketing under the Experience Thailand with Mario campaign.

In the first quarter of 2017 (January-March), TAT says it expects Thailand to welcome 9.2 million international visitors and generate 490 billion Baht (US$14 billion), representing a year-on-year increase of 2% and 7%, respectively. Meanwhile, domestic tourism is expected to yield 32.5 million trips and 240 billion Baht (US$6.8 billion), a year-on-year growth of 8% and 12%, respectively.

City Pillar Shrine in Ubon Ratchathani, just an one hour flight from Bangkok and one of the nicest cities in Thailand

The growth momentum is expected to continue through to the second quarter with a year-on-year growth target of 6% or 8.02 million international visitor arrivals and 11% to 400 billion Baht (US$11.42 billion).

The potential top five markets in terms of revenue include China (120 billion Baht / US$3.4 billion, up 7%), Russia (24 billion Baht / US$685 million, up 44%), Malaysia (23 billion Baht / US$657 million, up 5%), India (19 billion Baht / 542 million, up 18%), and the UK (17 billion Baht / US$485 million, up 7%).

As well as the hosting of major global events and a series of targetted marketing strategies in China and other key markets, TAT also bases its second quarter growth target on the number of forward bookings. Other contributing factors include new air routes from China and Russia, including Lion Airs four flights per week on the Nanchang-Bangkok route, Kunming Airlines three flights per week on the Kunming-Hat Yai route, and Ural Airlines daily flight on the Novosibirsk-Bangkok route.

The extension of the visa fee waiver and reduction for visas on arrival for tourists from 21 countries until 31 August, this year, is also expected to help Thailand maintain its popularity as the top destination in the region.

For the period of the five-day Songkran holiday, from 13-17 April, TAT says it expects Thailand to welcome at least 470,000 international visitors, up 10% over the 2016 Songkran period, and generate some 8 billion Baht (US$228 million) in revenue, up 17%. Meanwhile, domestic tourism is expected to contribute to 2.47 million trips (up 9.6%) and generate 8.54 billion Baht (US$244 million), up 12.5%.

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