Thailand steps up tourism promotion to boost economic growth hinh anh 1Visitors in Thailand (Photo: VNA)
Bangkok (VNA) – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has stepped up marketing plans for the remaining months of this year with the aim of boosting domestic tourism.

TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn said two new campaigns entitled “Visit Thailand with 100 baht” and “Shocking Weekday Travel” will be implemented after receiving the cabinet’s endorsement next week.

He said tourists will enjoy heavy discounts and deals on tourism services under the campaigns, which will extend through the end of the year.

The campaigns are expected to encourage at least 20 million Thais to travel locally a month and help domestic travel reach 170 million trips as planned, Yuthasak said.

The Thai Government last month announced an economic stimulus package worth 316 billion baht (over 10.3 billion USD) in a bid to raise the country’s growth rate to at least 3 percent this year.

With the package, Thai travellers will receive cash handouts of 1,000 baht for domestic tourism spending and a 15 percent refund if they spend 30,000 baht on tourism activities.

Hit by the sputtering economy and geopolitical tensions, Thailand’s tourism industry grew at a slow pace in the first eight months of the year. Domestic tourism rose by 1.3 percent year-on-year to 103.53 million trips, while international arrivals stood at 26.5 million, up 2.6 percent.

Considering the sluggish situation, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports has cut its forecast of foreign arrivals to 39-39.8 million this year from 40.2 million.

TAT is confident that the goal is achievable, as tourism is approaching the peak season and more campaigns will be launched to stimulate the market.

Earlier, Thailand has waived a 2,000-baht visa-on-arrival fee for 19 nations, including China and India, until the end of next April.

Since sustainability has become a global trend, Yuthasak said TAT will highlight responsible tourism as a flagship project for the next fiscal year.

The Thai agency has arranged several campaigns to build awareness among tourists, such as the “Upcycling the Oceans” initiative, to help reduce the environmental impact of tourism.

Thailand hopes to welcome 42 million foreign visitors and earn about 2.43 trillion baht from tourism in 2020, of which 1.28 trillion bath coming from domestic tourism./.