The Chonburi provincial office and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) revealed today, March 10th, that the number of tourists has significantly dropped from 1.5 million tourists to 26 thousand in the first quarter of 2021 year over year, urging the expansion of the “We Travel Together” campaign until July.
Kajorndet Apichartrakul, Director at the Tourism Authority of Thailand at Pattaya Office, exposed the data and statistics of hotels and the tourism situation of Pattaya City in which January was considered the most financially critical month as the new wave of the Covid-19 Coronavirus had just battered Thailand and several health measures were implemented nationwide to control and restrict people from traveling across the country. Therefore, the hotel occupancy rate in the Pattaya area in January 2021 was only at 1 percent, compared to the same period in 2021.
The director told the press: “The statistic means that in January 2021, there were only 26 thousand tourists who came to visit and stay in Pattaya. Unlike in January 2020 when there were reportedly about 1.5 million tourists. Keep in mind, January 2020 had already seen a significant drop from 2019 due to Chinese tourists stopping to arrive as the Covid-19 pandemic began.”
“This is due to Pattaya having always relied on foreign tourists at a proportion of roughly 70 percent to 30 percent. As we were also promoting domestic tourism, however, the government health controls that discouraged cross-provincial travel had affected our tourism industry, as much as we knew that it was inevitable.”
Regarding the recent tourism situation, Kajorndet told reporters that it is somewhat better as the ease of the health restrictions had been gradually in effect. It is expected that the situation is likely to be gradually better by the end of this month, however, it will remain the worst tourism situation that has ever happened in the city, according to Kajorndet.
He also believed that the overall hotel occupancy must increase from 22 percent to 30 percent in order to successfully revive domestic tourism. Expanding the period of the tourist stimulus campaign like “We Travel Together” or “Half-Half” projects will potentially boost people’s purchasing power, according to his statement. He also stated that it was hoped that the Songkran festival would bring many domestic tourists to Pattaya and that officials were able to reach a balanced level of “fun vs. tradition” to attract tourists.
“Pattaya’s TAT office then proposed the Thai government to expand “We Travel Together” in Phase 3 until July because we believe that this opportunity will bring the tourist spending of Thai people back to a stabilized level until the situation has returned to normal and the country is ready to open for foreigners again,” the director concluded.
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