Thailand welcomed 6.7 million international visitors last year, according to the Tourism and Sports Ministry.
When compared to 2019, the total of international visitors decreased by 83.21% from 39.9 million. Total earnings also dropped by 82% from 1.6 billion baht to 332 million baht.
The largest group of visitors were from China (1.25 million tourists), down 88.63% from 10.99 million in 2019. The second-largest group was from Malaysia (619,451 visitors), followed by Russia (587,167), Laos (380,917) and Japan (320,331). Ranking in sixth were visitors from India (261,778), followed by South Korea (260,228), France (236,527), Germany (230,598) and the United Kingdom (221,392).
According to the ministry, most of the tourists came during the first quarter of last year, before the country locked down due to Covid-19. As part of restrictions to limit international arrivals during the third and fourth quarters, most visitors were those who had a special tourist visa, business visa, or were part of Thailand Elite card scheme.
For this year, the ministry previously forecast that the total number of international tourists would rise to 10 million before revising the target down to 5 million after the second wave of the pandemic in the Kingdom.
According to Kasikorn Research Centre, domestic travel will play a crucial role for the tourism industry this year. The centre has forecast that Thais may take 120 million domestic trips, up 39% from last year. The total spending may reach 660 billion baht.
However, if things do not turn out as forecast or if the country faces another Covid-19 wave, a new cluster of infections, or a situation that does not lead to total lockdown, Thais may likely take 90 million domestic trips in 2021, up 4.3%. In this case, spending may reach around 500 billion baht.
Light festival open to guests in Ratchaburi
Na Satta Culture Park in Ratchaburi is hosting the “Nasatta Light Festival 2021” every Friday to Sunday this month.
The attraction is located on a 42 rai plot of land on Road 325 (Phetkasem-Damnoen Saduak) in Bang Phae district, about a one-hour drive from Bangkok. It has about 60 wax sculptures exhibited in different zones.
The light fest was postponed from last month due to a Covid-19 outbreak in Samut Sakhon. Entrance fees between 6-10pm are 250 baht for adults and 150 baht for kids over 12. For a one-day pass (9am to 10pm), the ticket price is 300 baht for adults and 200 baht for kids.
Visit nasatta.com or call 032-383-333.
Traditional shows back at Sangkhit Sala
The Fine Arts Department (FAD) has resumed traditional and folk performances every weekend at Sangkhit Sala, an open-air stage located in the same area as the National Museum Bangkok, Na Phra That Road.
The two-hour show will run until March 7 from 5-7pm every Saturday and Sunday. Admission fee is 20 baht.
For more details about the programme, visit the Facebook page at bit.ly/3aWNmwl or call the Office of the Music And Drama at FAD at 02-224-1342 and 02-221-0171.
HOTEL DEALS & UPDATES
Dusit International plans to launch Dusit Princess Mahboula Kuwait in 2023.
The hotel will be its first Dusit brand in the country. Owned by Kuwait-based Al Fajer International Holding Company, the hotel will feature 180 rooms and 70 serviced apartments, a restaurant, lobby lounge, swimming pool, a 900m² fitness centre and Namm Spa. The hotel will also have four meeting rooms and a ballroom which will accommodate up to 350 participants.
The property will be about a 25-minute drive from the city centre and Kuwait International Airport.
Dusit’s portfolio includes 340 properties operating under six brands in 15 countries. In the Middle East, the company currently operates seven hotels and will open two more this year.
Bangkok Marriott Marquis Queen’s Park is offering the “Month Of Love” promotion until Feb 28.
The offer is for guests who want to spend a night in an M Suite or Grand Marquis Suite. Prices start from 10,099++ baht and includes daily breakfast, a private limousine transfer service within Bangkok, a bottle of sparkling wine every day of the stay, and a special price for an aromatherapy body treatment at Quan Spa for 999 baht per person (two treatments per stay).
Visit bit.ly/3b3i5b5 or call 02-059-5555.
Email [email protected] if you have any comments to share.