Thu, August 11, 2022

in-focus

THAI, THAI Smile and TAT target large Indian tourist market


Thai Airways International (THAI), Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and THAI Smile Airways (THAI Smile) on April 8 signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) to promote Thai tourism in the Indian market.

Acting THAI CEO Suvadhana Sibunruang said following the reopening of international borders in various countries, air travel and tourism industry are showing positive signs of recovery.

He said the LOI aimed to enhance travel experience and develop marketing activities for the Indian market, to offer passengers with privileges and joint promotions, especially for leisure, golf, visiting friends and relatives and wedding travellers, and to exchange information on the tourism industry for sustainable development in the industry.

"In 2019, before the Covid-19 pandemic, 1.9 million travellers from India generated more than 8.5 billion baht in revenue for Thailand," he said.

"This collaboration is expected to boost the recovery of Thai tourism businesses and the Thai economy after the pandemic."

THAI and THAI Smile currently operate the following flights to India:

1. Roundtrip Bangkok – Delhi: 14 flights per week

2. Roundtrip Bangkok – Mumbai: 7 flights per week

3. Roundtrip Bangkok – Chennai: 7 flights per week

4. Roundtrip Bangkok – Bengaluru: 7 flights per week

5. Roundtrip Bangkok – Kolkata: 7 flights per week by THAI Smile starting April 11

6. Roundtrip Bangkok – Phuket – Mumbai: 7 flights per week by THAI Smile starting April 10

"In addition to the collaboration in the Indian market, THAI operates flights in over 34 continental and intercontinental routes in its summer 2022 schedule," he said.

Suvadhana added that passengers may travel further with THAI Smile and Star Alliance member airlines.

"Flight frequencies may increase in response to the growing travel demand and the government's upcoming policy," he added.

Vice Minister for Tourism and Sports Napintorn Srisunpang said the Indian market is significant in South Asia both in market size and tourist purchasing power.

This market is necessary for every country driven by the tourism economy, he pointed out.

"This collaboration is the opportunity to boost the recovery of the Indian market following the Air Travel Bubble agreement between Thailand and India," he said.

Citing the Tourism and Sports Ministry's Economics Tourism and Sports Division, he said Thailand welcomed 1.99 million inbound tourists from India in 2019, 24.85 per cent higher year on year, and earned THB86.37 billion, an increase of 27.45 per cent.

"This reflects the potential of the Indian market," he added.

TAT deputy governor for international marketing Asia and South Pacific Tanes Petsuwan said that as part of the "Visit Thailand Year 2022" campaign, TAT will focus on quality inbound tourists from this particular market through celebrities and influencers marketing to the millennials target audience.

He said TAT Delhi and Mumbai offices will also notify local tour agents about Thailand's immigration measures and new travel products and services to plan joint promotion activities for luxurious tourists.

He also confirmed that Amazing Thailand Wedding Expo 2022 will be held this month to boost wedding travellers later this year.

Meanwhile, TAT is joining the South Asia Travel and Tourism Exchange 2022 in Delhi from May 18 to 20 to promote Thailand on its readiness in tourism, he added.

"Based on THAI and THAI Smile load factor figures, up to 13,000 tourists from India are expected to visit Thailand every month from this April," he said.

"The number is expected to rise to 80,000 as soon as the situation improves," he added.

Published : April 11, 2022

By : THE NATION