Thailand expects to enjoy a steady increase in international visitor numbers and revenue in the first quarter of this year, following a strong growth in January and a host of favorable factors, including a high demand from the China market for the Chinese New Year holiday period and the tireless effort by the kingdom’s tourism stakeholders to attract more tourists.
In January 2015, Thailand welcomed a total of 2.65 million foreign tourists and generated about 120 billion baht in revenue, representing a year-on-year increase of 15.9 percent and 12.7 percent, respectively.
H.E. Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, Minister of Tourism and Sports said, “The strong performance in January can be attributed to the significant growth in tourist arrivals at international airports throughout the kingdom, with China being the largest market. We expect to continue to enjoy a steady increase in the first quarter, especially in February due to the high demand from the China market during this coming Lunar New Year.”
Thailand is home to the world’s largest Chinatown (in Yaowarat, Bangkok), which is also the location for the nation’s biggest Chinese New Year celebrations. But travelers are also invited to enjoy a rich and diverse cultural mix of festivities that take place at key destinations up and down the kingdom, including Phuket, Nakhon Ratchasima, Ratchaburi, Phetchaburi, Trang, Suphan Buri, Nakhon Sawan, Songkhla (Hat Yai), Ayutthaya, Chon Buri (Pattaya), and Chiang Mai.
To ensure a steady growth for Thailand’s tourism, the Thai government is working on a number of policies and strategies to attract international visitors to visit the kingdom and to encourage Thai people to take more trips within the country. They include the launch of the “2015 Discover Thainess” campaign, as a way to promote Thailand’s natural and cultural assets among Thais and foreigners as well as to pass on the Thai way of happiness to international visitors.
In addition, last week, the government announced Monday, 4 May, 2015, to be an extra holiday with the objective of promoting tourism as a long holiday, from May 1-5, would encourage Thais to travel and would boost the economy.