Thailand to kick off campaign to stimulate domestic tourism hinh anh 1Tourists in Bangkok, Thailand (Photo: AFP/VNA)

Bangkok (VNA) -
The Tourism Council of Thailand is preparing to start its “We Love Thailand” campaign to stimulate domestic tourism after the COVID-19 situation eases, said its President Chairat Trirattanajarasporn.

The campaign, to be implemented in collaboration with the Tourism and Sports Ministry and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), will promote new local products and attractions, especially those involving tourism communities, he said.

Chairat also said domestic tourism needs to be promoted for one to two years while the market waits for foreign tourists to regain confidence.

In the initial phase, it is expected that people from China, the Republic of Korea or ASEAN countries would return to Thailand, according to him.

“Thailand needs Chinese tourists as we recover,” Chairat added. “When the situation becomes safe again, Chinese will return to Thailand as our country is near. Moreover, the Chinese market has the capacity to expand.”

Meanwhile, the Tourism and Sports Ministry has an idea of providing long-stay tour packages for foreign tourists who want to visit coronavirus-free areas.

TAT predicted that Thailand could receive only 16 million international visitors in 2020, much lower than the target of 40 million set before the COVID-19 outbreak. Tthe number of foreign visitors to Thailand this year are forecast to decline by 24 million, resulting in a loss of 1.9 trillion THB in revenue. Last year, the country welcomed a record 39.8 million foreign tourists.

The agency also estimated that the number of domestic trips in Thailand this year will reach only 60 million, far behind the target of 172 million set earlier and much lower than 167 million recorded in 2019.

Total revenue from foreign and domestic tourists may amount to only 1.12 trillion THB, down 62.8 percent from 3.01 trillion THB last year.

Statistics show that the number of foreign tourist arrivals to Thailand in the first quarter of 202020 was only 6.7 million, down 38 percent year on year.

According to data from Thailand's Tourism and Sports Ministry, the country's tourism revenue dropped nearly 40 percent in the first quarter of 2020 to 335 billion THB (more than 10 billion USD), 222 billion THB lower than that of the same period last year./.