It is the first public appearance of the Tourism Authority of Thailand abroad following the passing of Thailand King Bumibhol Adulyadej. TAT came to London World Travel Market to show its commitment towards the travel community. TAT has been participating in the WTM since its inception in 1980. This year, the Thai contingent includes 48 exhibitors including high-quality hotels, health and wellness facilities, as well as world-class food and beverage outlets, which are embedded with giving a touch of Thainess and local experiences to their guests.
The tourism authority took the opportunity in London to also launch its latest campaign for 2017, the “Unique Thai Local Experiences” designed to fit in with the “Year of Sustainable Tourism Development” proclaimed by the UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO).
In recognition of the late King’s multi duties towards national sports, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports has planned to turn Thailand into a sporting hub by promoting and supporting regional and international sporting events and tournaments; such as, the Air Race One flying test event, the Laguna Phuket Triathlon 2016, the Thailand Equestrian Princess’s Cup, the Jet-Ski King’s Cup, and the Phuket King’s Cup Regatta.
Moreover, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports working closely with the Ministry of Public Health, has launched a ‘Visit Thailand Enhance Your Healthy Life’ campaign for medical tourism, as well as joined hands with TAT to attend significant world medical trade events and roadshows.
In 2017, TAT aims to offer “Value for Experiences” to travellers coming to the Kingdom by focussing on “Unique Thai Local Experiences” to the world. In line with the Thailand 4.0 model, TAT will highlighting a value-based economy driven by innovation and looking to be a creative economy delivering creative tourism. TAT has also initiated the LINK project in which ‘L’ represents Local Experiences; ‘I’ for Innovation; ‘N’ for Networking and ‘K’ for Keeping character. This is aimed to promote the local tourism in various communities in Thailand; such as, Ban Na Ton Chan Community in Sukhothai province, Kram Sakon in Sakon Nakhon province, Ban Nam Chiao Ecotourism Community, Trat province, and Ko Klang Community, Krabi province.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor said, “Promoting the local experience will not only benefit visitors, but also the local people as well as travel agents. We strongly believe that each local community of Thailand can deliver distinctive, genuine, unique hospitality and Thai culture with new exciting experiences to tourists. Also, this will create new and unique quality products for travel agents to offer to their customers.”
From 1 January – 22 October, 2016, Thailand welcomed 26.4 million tourists, generating an income of US$33.03 billion, up 11.82 percent and 15.59 percent, respectively. The top five tourism spending countries are China, Malaysia, Russia, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America.
At the end of 2016, TAT expects to reach US$43.5 billion, an increase of 18 per cent based on a projection of 33 million international tourists.