Although Thailand’s tourism industry faced some headwinds in 2018, with the world economy slowing and a boat disaster in Phuket, the country still remains a hugely popular destination.

The total number of foreign tourists from the top 10 countries is now accounting for a total of 26.3 million people, or 69% of arrivals in Thailand.

Moreover when combining the five most important source countries (namely China, Malaysia, South Korea, Laos and Japan), the figure shows 19.9 millions, or more than 50% of the foreign entries in Thailand for 2018.

More than 10 million Chinese tourists

Such a concentration on the top five providers has a lot to do with the fact that during the last decade Thailand has been a hugely popular destination among Chinese tourists. Chinese tourists now account for more than 30% of tourism revenues in Thailand.

During the summer, and the following months of September and October, the number of tourists from China had dropped significantly, due to a boat tragedy in Phuket which killed more than 45 people, mostly Chinese,

But according to the latest estimations the number of Chinese tourists has picked up and is to be significantly higher than 10 million in 2018, a 7% increase from last year.
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Top 10 tourists traveling to Thailand in 2018

  • 10.6 million Chinese tourists
  • 4.1 million Malaysian tourists
  • 1.8 million South Korean tourists
  • 1.8 million Laos tourists
  • 1.6 million Japanese tourists
  • 1.5 million Russian tourists
  • 1.5 million Indian tourists
  • 1.3 Million Singaporean tourists
  • 1.1 million Vietnamese tourists
  • 1.1 million U.S. tourists

(Note: preliminary estimate information by TAT)

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