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
Supasorn, Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT),
said, “In the first quarter, we’ve 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.
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 Air’s 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.
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%.
Tourism Authority of Thailand,