Tour operators shift business plan due to virus


BANGKOK – Facing the loss of nearly all Chinese tourists, members of Thai-Chinese Tourism Alliance Association have shifted their business plan to focus on domestic market.

Some of the 160 members of the association had already suspended their operations because of the coronavirus outbreak and gloomy outlook for tourism industry, President of the Association Chanaphan Kaewklachaiwut said on Thursday.

Chanaphan said the tour operators had to adjust their business plan by looking at other markets and offering more domestic tour packages for Thai customers.

Thailand’s previously-robust tourism industry relied heavily on Chinese tourists. Last year, Chinese tourist arrivals increased by 4.4 percent to 10.99 million.

The Thai government expects overall tourist arrivals to plunge by 50 percent in the first half of 2020.