The Tourism Council of Thailand has urged the government to focus its measures on domestic tourism and relax regulations in order to promote domestic spending.
Phuriwat Limthavonrus, assistant president of the Tourism Council of Thailand, recently expressed concern over Thailand’s domestic tourism industry, noting that rising Omicron infection case numbers have been discouraging people from traveling ahead of the upcoming Songkran holidays. Many advance bookings for April have already been canceled due to concerns among holidaymakers over the spread of the coronavirus variant and attempts to cut unnecessary spending amid rising fuel prices and cost of living expenses. Moreover, Thailand is heading into its low tourism period after April due to the rainy season. This means the outlook for the tourism sector will be highly uncertain until the final three months of this year.
The assistant president urged the government to prioritize the recovery of domestic tourism and to plan assistance and stimulus measures such as the Tour Tiew Thai co-payment scheme. He said he believes that while these measures have the potential to revitalize the industry, they should be revised to include fewer requirements and complex conditions.
According to the Phuriwat, international arrivals are unlikely to have a significant impact on the tourism industry this year, as other countries have been offering a range of travel options with fewer entry requirements than Thailand. Unless conditions change, he expects the Kingdom’s international tourism industry to recover in 2023. (NNT)