Tourism Authority of Thailand Focuses on Exceptional Experiences and Excellent Value that Thailand Offers to German Visitors, Features Spas and Wellness at ITB 2012
Berlin, March 7, 2012 — The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) today unveiled its 2012 marketing strategy for Thai tourism at International Tourism Exchange (ITB) Berlin 2012, the world’s leading B2B-platform for the travel and tourism industry.
At ITB 2012, the TAT focused on the many exceptional experiences that Thailand offers to German tourists, from sunny beaches to niche products such as weddings and honeymoons, all offering excellent value-for-money. The TAT also featured several of Thailand's award-winning spa operators at its booth, reinforcing the Kingdom's position as a leading destination for personal care and wellness.
For 2012, the TAT aims to grow Thailand's tourism sector by increasing the number of first-time visitors, encouraging return visits and enticing luxury lifestyle lovers to visit the Kingdom. The TAT is targeting 5.9 million arrivals from European countries this year, an increase of 9% over 2011. These visitors are expected to generate tourism revenues of over 7.42 billion Euros (approximately 300 billion baht), with average spending of more than 1,200 Euros (approximately 50,000 baht) per trip.
“The TAT is proud to be a long-standing partner of the International Tourism Exchange , the world’s largest trade show. Thailand has been in every ITB show since 1976 and recognises the role this great event has played in facilitating the development of Thailand’s tourism sector. This year is special, as it marks the 150th Anniversary of Thai-German Diplomatic Relations. Our two countries will team up to hold events and activities throughout the year in celebration of this auspicious occasion,” said TAT Governor Mr. Suraphon Svetasreni.
The Thai Pavilion at ITB 2012 highlights the luxury and charm of Thai spa therapy and massage techniques from renowned, award-winning spa operators. German tour operators can also visit the “Thailand Mini Mart” to meet with 112 tourism service providers from Thailand.
The TAT has been actively supporting the development of green tourism for many years. At ITB 2012, Her Royal Highness Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya Sirivadhana Barnavadi will present Green Tourism Awards to German tour operators and hotels that actively promote ecologically-sound travel and responsible tourism in Thailand.
“The TAT is making a strategic shift from mass marketing to addressing niche markets targeted at specific customer segments in specific countries. In addition to green tourism, we are highlighting how Thailand addresses traveller's individual interests such as golf, weddings & honeymoons, and spas & wellness, offering great experiences and excellent value for money,” said Governor Suraphon.
Germany ranking third among Thai tourism’s top three European markets, following Russia and the United Kingdom. More than 600,000 Germans visited Thailand during 2011, representing 3.16% of total arrivals. In January 2012, the number of visitors from Germany to Thailand rose to almost 74,000, up 2.24% compared to the same period last year. Some 69% were repeat visitors and 92% were Free Individual Travellers (FITs).
“When in Thailand, visitors from Germany enjoy a variety of diverse, memorable travel experiences. While beaches remain popular, there is a growing trend for German visitors to include wellness and Thai culture such as music and arts in their travel plans. Eco-friendly tourism is also gaining popularity among German visitors. Average daily spending for German travellers is approximately 3,500 Baht per person (87 Euros), with an average length of stay of about 15 days,” concluded TAT Governor Suraphon.
Arrivals to Thailand from other European countries are also on the rise. In 2011, Thailand welcomed 4.94 million visitors from European countries, up 11.40% over 2010. With 1.01 million arrivals last year, Russia showed the strongest growth with a 57.36% increase compared to 2010. Other markets showing strong growth during 2011 were Spain, up 42.30%; Eastern European countries up a collective 11.15%; and France, with a 10.30% increase.
Following ITB 2012, the TAT will take undertake a “Post ITB Road Show” to Poland on 12-13 March 2012 and the Czech Republic on 15 March 2012. Both are high-potential markets for Thailand.