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Thai Tourism to focus on Four Top niche-market

Organised by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) together with the Thai tourism industry, the TTM will feature products and services related to Ecotourism, Golf, Health and Wellness, and Wedding and Honeymoon in a special dedicated pavilion. In addition to the four mentioned categories, which have always been Thailand’s strong points, there will also be a category focusing on General Leisure.

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Four of Thailand’s top niche-market tourism segments will be featured prominently at the 2012 Thailand Travel Mart Plus Amazing Gateway to the Greater Mekong Subregion (TTM+2012) to be held between June 6-8 at Impact Muang Thong Thani Exhibition Centre.

Organised by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) together with the Thai tourism industry, the TTM will feature products and services related to Ecotourism, Golf, Health and Wellness, and Wedding and Honeymoon in a special dedicated pavilion. In addition to the four mentioned categories, which have always been Thailand’s strong points, there will also be a category focusing on General Leisure.

Thailand will feature products and services related to Ecotourism, Golf, Health and Wellness, and Wedding and Honeymoon.

Thailand will feature products and services related to Ecotourism, Golf, Health and Wellness, and Wedding and Honeymoon.

The TTM+ is the country’s premier annual trade event designed to promote travel and tourism to Thailand and its neighbours in the Greater Mekong Subregion. One of its primary objectives is to provide a platform for the region’s small and medium sized entrepreneurs (SMEs) to cost-effectively promote their products and services, especially as many of them cannot afford to go to foreign trade shows.

This year, over 400 booths are available for travel operators and service businesses across Thailand and the GMS countries. The business categories arranged for the event are Accommodation, Entertainment, Tourism Organization / Association, Tour Operator / Travel Agent, Transportation, and Other Travel Services.

Buyers are sourced from the major markets such as Europe, South East Asia, Eastern Asia, the United States, Australia, and New Zealand, as well as emerging ones like the CIS countries, Eastern Europe, Middle East, South America, and South Africa.

TAT Governor Suraphon Svetasreni said, “The focus on the four niche-market segments is based on the global trend for more experiential tourism, especially among repeat travellers seeking to spend more focussed time on a particular activity.

“There is direct benefit for both buyers and sellers in this product based category. It will open up opportunities for doing more business, understanding each other’s needs and improving the creativity and quality of services. This is because the buyers and the sellers could directly relate to each other’s field of expertise”.

Ecotourism: The Thai travel and tourism industry is becoming increasingly conscious of its environmental responsibilities. According to TAT Governor Suraphon Svetasreni,

“The need to reconcile the economic and ecological impact of travel and tourism is critical to the Balanced Strategy that we are pursuing as part of our tourism development policies.”

The Governor pointed out that the TAT has for years been undertaking environmental protection activities and projects such as the Green Leaf Certification Programme, the Thailand Tourism Awards programme, and the 7 Greens Concept, with an aim to promote environmentally-friendly tourism.

Golf: Thailand boasts over 200 high standard golf courses nationwide. Many of them have been designed and created by some of the game’s best-known players such as Nick Faldo, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Steve Ballesteros, Gary Player, and Greg Norman. In recent years, Thailand has hosted many major golf events such as the Thailand Golf Championship, Asia Pacific Golf Summit, PGA Conference of Asia, Honda LPGA Thailand, the 30th tournament on the tour’s annual roster and the 3rd Golf PGA Royal Trophy 2009.

Health & Wellness: A surge in Health and Wellness visitors is driven by the fact that Thailand is an excellent place for both preventive and curative forms of therapies and treatments. Thailand has over 200 international-standard hospitals and clinics, state-of-the-art medical technology, reasonable medical costs and excellent hospitality. It is also a perfect place for post-treatment convalescence and recovery. Both patients and members of their family can enjoy a good post-treatment holiday in Thailand at excellent value-for-money prices. Thailand is estimated to have attracted 1.8 million foreign visitors seeking medical treatment in 2010. It is also an excellent locale for people seeking to learn how to meditate and massage, based on the country’s long-standing Buddhist traditions.

Wedding & Honeymoon: In recent years, Thailand has become increasingly popular among wedding couples and honeymooners from India, China and France. Many Indian couples choose Thailand because they wish to tie the knot in a land renowned for its sense of grace and style, following customs and ceremonies with rich roots in Buddhist culture. The secluded, all-inclusive resorts are perfect for honeymoons.

Invited media and buyers will be able to avail of a range of post tours that will showcase these products as well as Thailand’s world-renowned natural beauty and rich cultural heritage.

Last year, TTM Plus welcomed a total of more than 1,000 participants, including 150 members of the media, from 30 countries. The 368 seller organisations included 78 agencies who were first-time sellers at this event. The 425 buyers from 54 countries included 120 first-time buyers.

Application forms for buyers and sellers and other related information are now available on the website and need to be submitted before the March 16, 2012 deadline:http://thailandtravelmartplus.com. Also sellers can also get the benefit of the early bird price until January 31, 2012.

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Can border reopening revive tourism in South-East Asia?

In Thailand, where pre-pandemic tourism accounted for 11-12% of GDP, the country lost an estimated $50bn last year as Covid-19 restrictions led to an 82% fall in arrival numbers.

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Ko Samed deserted pier

After 18 months of travel restrictions, a number of countries in South-east Asia have begun opening their borders to foreign visitors to stoke recovery in their respective tourism industries.

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Thailand to lift quarantine for vaccinated visitors from low-risk countries from November

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Thailand to lift quarantine for vaccinated visitors from low-risk countries from November

Bangkok, 12 October, 2021

Thai Prime Minister General Prayut Chan-o-cha in a nationally televised broadcast last night announced that Thailand planned to allow fully vaccinated foreign visitors to enter Thailand by air with no quarantine requirements from 1 November.

In the initial phase, Thailand will allow fully vaccinated travellers from at least 10 low-risk countries, including China, Germany, Singapore, the UK and USA. The list will be expanded from 1 December, and further enhanced to a very extensive list from 1 January.

Under the plan, fully vaccinated foreign visitors from the approved countries will need to show that they are COVID-free at their time of travel with an RT-PCR test undertaken before they leave their home country, and do a test in Thailand, after which they will be free to move around Thailand in the same way that any Thai citizen can do, the Prime Minister said.

Visitors from countries not on the list, will, of course, still be much welcomed, but with quarantine and other requirements.

In addition, the Prime Minister said consumption of alcoholic beverages in restaurants as well as the operation of entertainment venues under appropriate health precautions would be allowed from 1 December.

Below is the full speech by the Prime Minister.

National Address of the Prime Minister of Thailand

“THAILAND WILL WELCOME QUARANTINE-FREE VISITORS”

Monday 11 October, 2021

My fellow citizens, brothers and sisters:

In the last one-and-half years, we have lived with some of the greatest peacetime challenges our country has ever faced in its history, brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, and one that has left nobody untouched and no country in the world undamaged.

It has been one of the most painful experiences in my life, too: to make decisions that balance the saving of lives with the saving of livelihoods – a choice that is not always clearly separate, and where we may save lives, but commit those lives to the unbearable pain of trying to survive with little or no income; or where we may save livelihoods but commit one’s family, friends and neighbours to loss of life and the loss of their breadwinner.

In facing this terrible choice, it was my decision that we could not allow a slow, wait-and-see approach to confronting the pandemic and let it claim the lives of so many of our countrymen and women, as we, ultimately, saw happen in so many other countries.

As a result, I acted decisively on the advice of many of our outstanding public health experts to make our country one of the first in the world to move quickly with lockdowns and tight regulations.

With the collaboration of all sectors of society, and with everyone joining hands to face this crisis together, we have been among the most successful countries in the world in saving lives. 

But it has come at very great sacrifices of lost livelihoods, lost savings, and destroyed businesses – what we have all given up so that our mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, friends and neighbours may live for today.

The threat of a large scale, lethal spread of the virus in Thailand is now diminishing, even though the risk of resurgence is always there, and even though there are still serious constraints on our hospital and medical staff capacities. 

The time has come for us to ready ourselves to face the coronavirus and live with it as with other endemic infections and diseases, much as we have learnt to live with other diseases with treatments and vaccinations.

Today, I would like to announce the first small but important step in decisively beginning the process of trying to restore our livelihoods.

During the last weeks some of Thailand’s most important tourist source countries have begun to ease their travel restrictions on their citizens – countries like the UK, that now allow convenient travel to our country, as well as countries like Singapore and Australia that have started to ease travel restrictions on their citizens visiting other countries.

With these developments, we must act quickly but still cautiously, and not miss the opportunity to entice some of the year-end and New Year holiday season travellers during the next few months to support the many millions of people who earn a living from our tourism, travel and entertainment sectors as well as the many other related sectors.

I have, therefore, instructed the CCSA and the Ministry of Public Health to urgently consider within this week to allow, as of 1 November, international visitors to enter Thailand without any requirement for quarantine if they are fully vaccinated and arrive by air from low-risk countries.

All that visitors will need do is to show that they are COVID-free at their time of travel with an RT-PCR test undertaken before they leave their home country, and do a test in Thailand, after which they will be free to move around Thailand in the same way that any Thai citizen can do.

Initially, we will begin with at least 10 countries on our low-risk, no-quarantine list, including the United Kingdom, Singapore, Germany, China, and the United States of America, and enlarge that list by 1 December, and, by 1 January move to a very extensive list.

Visitors from countries not on the list, will, of course, still be much welcomed, but with quarantine and other requirements.

By 1 December, we will also consider allowing the consumption of alcoholic beverages in restaurants as well as the operation of entertainment venues under appropriate health precautions to support the revitalisation of the tourism and leisure sectors, especially as we approach the New Year period.

I know this decision comes with some risk.  It is almost certain that we will see a temporary rise in serious cases as we relax these restrictions.  We will have to track the situation very carefully, and see how to contain and live with that situation because I do not think that the many millions who depend on the income generated by the travel, leisure, and entertainment sector can possibly afford the devastating blow of a second lost new year holiday period. 

But if, in the months ahead, we see an unexpected emergence of a highly dangerous new variant of the virus, then, of course, we must also act accordingly and proportionately when we see the threat.  We know that this virus has surprised the world several times, and we must be ready for it to do so again. 

In mid-June of this year, I had set a 120-day goal for quarantine-free entry into Thailand and to accelerate our vaccinations.

I would like to take this opportunity to recognise the extraordinary achievements of our public health workers, other officials and all citizens for their response to my appeal in June.

After we adopted the 120-day goal, extraordinary efforts were made to increase our supply of vaccines and compete with many other countries to get deliveries.  And they were very successful.  Our vaccine deliveries jumped threefold, from around 4 million doses in May to almost 12 million in July… then to almost 14 million in August, and will now run at over 20 million a month until the end of the year, totalling over 170 million doses, far ahead of the goals I had set.

Similarly, our public health staff worked tirelessly to accelerate vaccinations to support our 120-day goal, and the public gave great cooperation to register for vaccinations despite the inconveniences that may have been caused in scheduling.  As a result, our daily vaccinations, which were running at around 80,000 doses a day in May, shot up immediately.  One month after our goal-setting, our public health team tripled the number of shots being administering a day, and they kept increasing that number until Thailand rose to be among the fastest ten countries in the world for administering shots!  Currently, they have frequently been administering more than 700,000 shots a day, and sometimes even exceeding one million shots a day.

Shortly after my address to the nation in mid-June setting our goal for quarantine-free entry into Thailand in 120 days, the world was struck by the highly infectious Delta variant.  Worldwide cases spiked up and peaked in August, just as they did in Thailand, and few thought that it would be possible to achieve any quarantine-free entry into Thailand this year.

The fact that we can begin quarantine-free entry in November, and despite many countries still trying to contain Delta variant infections with restrictions on the travel of their citizens is a great tribute to the unity of purpose and determined response to my appeal by the public health services, by many other government departments, by the private sector, and by the cooperation given by citizens in all matters.

Our nation has performed an extraordinary feat in the last months that we can all be very proud about everyone’s enormous contributions to those achievements.  These achievements, coupled with the gradual relaxation of other countries’ travel restrictions, now enables us to begin the process of quarantine-free entry into Thailand.

Thank you.

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