Thailand sees 10pc rise in GCC visitors
Dubai, April 30, 2012
Travel from the GCC to Thailand is expected to increase by 10 per cent in 2012 compared to 2011 visitor figures, said a top official.
Juthaporn Rerngronasa, deputy governor for international marketing, Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), was speaking at a pre-Arabian Travel Market gathering of Thai and local UAE travel industry representatives at the Dusit Thani Hotel Dubai.
'The Middle East market has been a growing and increasingly important source market of visitors to Thailand over the last couple of years, and we see positive signs to suggest that this trend will continue. We expect a further increase in visitors from the region in 2012 to reach 5 per cent,” she added.
TAT’s proactive strategy of engagement with the regional travel trade, airlines and agents, Thailand's continuing success in offering value-for-money as a leisure and business destination, variety of tourism products on offer and Thai hospitality, were some of the reasons given by Rerngronasa for the positive outlook regarding increased visitor numbers to Thailand from the region.
In the coming year the TAT Middle East Office will continue to reinforce the Thailand brand 'Amazing Thailand Always Amazes You', with a core focus on authenticity, value for money, and hospitality.
According to the seventh annual Future Brand Country Brand Index 2011-2012, Thailand ranked number 7 in terms of tourism brand image, while maintaining its Number 1 position in terms of Value for Money. Thailand also ranked among the top 10 for key attributes such as food, beaches, nightlife, shopping and accommodation.
Highlighting a significant strategic shift away from its traditional mass marketing, TAT announced it will now focus its marketing efforts on niche markets targeted at specific customer segments in specific countries.
For the Middle East, niche tourism products for health and wellness, wedding and honeymoon, green tourism and golf will be all be highlighted with a focus on the excellent and comparative value for money Thailand can provide within these niche travel segments.
For health and wellness major and minor surgery along with cosmetics and dental care at the kingdom's specialized hospitals will be promoted as too will Thailand's spa and wellbeing centres.
For the wedding and honeymoon market, TAT will introduce major romantic attractions in northern and southern Thailand with a focus on its many idyllic locations, outstanding hospitality, and expertise in planning weddings and events.
Green tourism will highlight the kingdom's more than 100 green hotels and 50 ready-to-market eco-friendly products from around the country, and Golf will introduce the country's more than 200 golf courses and its reputation for its female caddies renowned for being the most charming and knowledgeable in the world.
As a sub-theme to the 'Amazing Thailand: Always Amazes You' campaign, Middle East marketing strategies will also prominently feature a call to action to enjoy the many 'Miracle Moments' Thailand has to offer, including unique selling propositions for the kingdom's culture, heritage, way of life and popular festivals, in order to attract both first-time and repeat visitors.
The tourism industry in Thailand continues to develop and evolve with many new attractions. Among those highlighted by Rerngronasa to be of particular interest to visitors from the Middle East included Terminal 21, one of Bangkok's newest lifestyle and shopping complexes, with the unique concept of featuring popular landmarks from world-renowned cities on each floor; Asiatique The Riverfront, which once opened will form a large-scale riverside project combining shopping, dining, sightseeing, activities and events all in one complex. – TradeArabia News Service