Bangkok, 19 September 2019 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), together with the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, is expanding its ongoing ‘Tourism for All’ initiative in conjunction with the ‘Friendly Design’ pilot programme that promotes universal accessibility for disabled travellers.
This year, four friendly-design familiarisation trips are scheduled for special needs tourists and elderly travellers from Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and China. The first group of 15 from Hong Kong is travelling from 4 to 6 October, 2019, to Pattaya, Ayutthaya and Bangkok.
This pilot project will be showcased at the Friendly Design Expo 2019 to create awareness of Thailand as a suitable destination for tourists with special needs.
The project is initiated through public-private sector partnerships, between TAT, the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (DASTA), Friendly Design Foundation, and Centra by Centara Government Complex Hotel and Convention Centre Chaeng Wattana.
The result of the trip, including a participant satisfaction survey, will be presented to relevant agencies on the national, regional as well as on a UN level, according to Mr. Krisana Lalai, President of the Friendly Design Foundation.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of TAT said, “The launching of this project shows the effort that we wish to make our country a better place for all tourists who wish to have some amazing experience in Thailand.”
Thailand became a party to the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) on 28 August, 2008. This project also corresponds with TAT’s Thailand Tourism Strategies for 2018-2020. The initiative also promotes multilateral cooperation between the government, private enterprise and civil servants including public-private partnerships.
‘Tourism for All’ recognises people with disabilities, elderly people and cross-generational families as an increasingly important tourism and travel market segment.
This helps build awareness of Thailand as ASEAN’s leading destination for people with disabilities, and that the country has readiness and understanding to cater to this group.