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[ 2014-11-03 ]

TAT rolls out campaign to boost domestic travel

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is rolling out its "12 Cities...You Can't Say No" campaign to boost domestic travel next year.

TAT Governor Thawatchai Arunyik said on Friday that the authority was using this campaign to boost domestic tourism next year. This campaign is part of TAT's "Fall in Love with Thailand" theme for 2015, created to promote secondary destinations.

"Next year, TAT expects local travellers to take 148 million trips, a 9.5-per-cent increase from this year's projection of 136 million trips," Thawatchai said.

Domestic tourism has been suffering since the military takeover in May, but TAT hopes the industry will rebound in the final quarter. The agency predicts that local tourism could generate about Bt700 billion this year, and see 14 per cent growth to Bt800 billion next year.

One of the key factors expected to drive this growth is the tax-deduction scheme for meetings and conventions-related trips. The government plans to implement this measure until the end of next year in a move to restore the domestic market.

The government is also launching local and foreign campaigns on tourism under martial law, which may be extended into next year.

The Thai Hotels Association reported that operators in major destinations had received a lot more bookings, especially during the year-end period as the government has announced extra holidays for the new-year period. Many of the operators who focus on domestic market will likely achieve almost 100-per-cent occupancy during the year-end period.

Thawatchai said all 12 selected destinations featured unique characters and had the potential to be developed into major attractions.

TAT covers 12 provinces in its latest campaign - Lampang, Phetchabun, Nan, Buri Ram, Loei, Samut Songkhram, Ratchaburi, Trat, Chanthaburi, Trang, Chumphon, and Nakhon Si Thammarat. For many decades now, tourism has only been promoted in six key cities - Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, Samui, Chiang Mai and Hun Hin-Cha Am.

Source: The Bangkok Post