Thai tourism operators are gearing up to promote travel within the region in a bid to boost sales amid unfavourable business sentiment brought on by the ongoing political deadlock.

The Thai Travel Agents Association (TTAA) said its members will adjust its marketing strategy to focus on travel within the ASEAN in a bid to make up for cancelled trips to other continents such as Europe and America spurred on by shaken confidence in the state of the Thai economy next year.

The targeted countries include Vietnam, Malaysia and Singapore.

The TTAA forecasted that the number of Thais flying to foreign destinations will drop by 40 percent compared to the same period last year. The prolonged political protests which eroded domestic confidence in the economy coupled with rising living costs negatively contributed to the drop.

The association has let on that more travelers are cancelling their flights to China during Chinese New Year in January. However, this month, the tourism still performs strongly as a total of 300,000 Thais are visiting Hong Kong, Japan and the Republic of Korea.-VNA