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Thai PM Srettha Thavisin Outlines Vision to Ignite Tourism Thailand

Thai PM Srettha Thavisin Outlines Vision to Ignite Tourism Thailand - VISITTHAILAND.netBangkok, Thailand, April 9, 2024 / TRAVELINDEX / Prime Minister and Finance Minister, H.E. Mr. Srettha Thavisin, outlined his vision to ‘Ignite Tourism Thailand’ in 2025 with a multifaceted approach to establish the country as a tourism hub. Prime Minister Srettha reiterated the government’s commitment to boosting Thailand as a tourism hub to drive the economy and bring prosperity to the country. “The goal is to establish Thailand as a leading destination for tourists from around the world.”

He stated that the government’s target of 3.5 trillion Baht in tourism revenue this year, with an aim to earn much more in the coming years, would be achieved through five strategies.

Conceptualised at the “Ignite Thailand’s Tourism Workshop” held in Bangkok on 15 March 2024 with participation from public and private agencies, the strategies include elevating the tourist experience, promoting must-do activities, raising awareness of hidden-gem destinations, developing intra-regional travel linkage with neighbouring countries, and hosting more world-class events.

Tourism and Sports Minister, Ms. Sudawan Wangsuphakijkosol said the five strategies aligned with the government’s policy to make Thailand a global aviation hub, handling more than 150 million air travellers annually by 2030.

“In 2025, Thailand’s tourism is set to experience growth on an unprecedented scale. The new ‘Up Level, Add Story, Create Value’ concept will enhance every step of the tourist journey across all touchpoints,” Minister Sudawan said.

Outlines for the five strategies include:

1: Elevating tourist experience

Steps will be taken to promote Thailand’s tourism information and promotion to allow tourists to plan an informed trip to the country.

Existing measures will be strictly enforced to ensure tourist safety and convenience, including accessible ‘Tourism for All’, one-stop Tourist Police Hotline 1155, and universal coverage for emergency patients.

Travel facilitation will be further enhanced in the next three months. This includes improving queue management in airports, raising hotel standards, extending visa-free entry to more countries, enhancing tourist safety and security measures, and ensuring good maintenance and hygiene in public restrooms.

In the next six months, the government plans to push for the amendment of related tourism laws, including hotel regulations, alcohol restrictions, import duties on mega-event equipment, and VAT refund requirements.

2: Five must-do activities

Must Beat (Muay Thai) highlights four unique styles of ancient Thai boxing and presents the sport as a form of cardio exercise.

Must Eat (Thai food) promotes Thai kitchen to the world with 77 local dishes and 77 local desserts.

Must Seek (Thai culture) tells the story of a faith-based journey, cultural superstitions, and folklore culture.

Must Buy (Thai fabric) partners with world-renowned designers to turn Thai fabrics into fashion items.

Must See (Thai shows) showcases impressive traditional and contemporary performances.

3: Travel linkage between major and hidden-gem destinations

Promotion of travel linkage between well-established cities and hidden gems in lesser-known destinations is set to better balance the distribution of tourist arrivals and tourism income between urban and rural areas.

Recommended routes include Lanna Culture (Chiang Mai – Lamphun – Lampang), UNESCO Heritage Trail (Sukhothai – Kamphaeng Phet – Nakhon Ratchasima), NAGA Legacy (Nakhon Phanom – Sakon Nakhon – Bueng Kan), Paradise Islands (Trang – Satun), and The Wonder of Deep South (Pattani – Yala – Narathiwat).

4: Hub of ASEAN

Plans include promoting intra-region travel and helping to enhance the development and promotion of ASEAN as a single tourism destination, introducing the ASEAN Pass in partnership with airlines, and raising awareness of cross-border QR payment.

5: Word Class Event Hub

Incentives will be launched to attract major festivals, concerts, and events to Thailand, thus establishing the country as a centre of world-class events.

Upcoming world-class events include Summer Sonic Bangkok 2024, KAWS Arts, Moto GP, and Volleyball World Championship.

Minister Sudawan said, “These five strategies are planned to ignite Thailand to a tourism hub status to attract more tourists to the country and spending more time and budget, further boosting Thailand as the number one tourist destination.”

From 1 January to 1 April 2024, Thailand recorded 9.4 million visitor arrivals, representing a 42 per cent increase over the same period in 2023.