The government is spending billions to jump-start the tourism industry by essentially paying Thais to take vacations.
Speaking at the Pattaya Business & Tourism Association’s July 8 meeting at the Green Park Resort, Tourism Authority of Thailand Pattaya Director Pinnart Charoenpol rattled off the names of numerous programs in which the government is subsidizing the cost of airline tickets, hotel rooms, restaurants and tourist attractions to get Thais to travel and spend money.
Domestic tourism cannot bring the in the trillions of baht that foreign tourism does, but the government has no intention of reopening borders to foreigners anytime soon, so it’s paying people to travel rather than, as in the west, supplement the incomes of people affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
The “We Tour Thailand” program will cost the government 22.5 billion and the “Tour to Share Happiness” program will reward medical personnel and public health volunteers for their service in battling the Covid-19 outbreak.
The latter program gives health professionals 2,000 baht in vouchers to cover travel expenses for two days and one night and will cost 2 billion baht.
TAT also is running the “Pattaya Hot Deal” promo, offering 50 percent discounts on Chonburi hotels and tourist attractions, along with the annual Amazing Thailand Grand Sale.
All should help Pattaya’s tourism sector recover, she said.