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Thailand expects jump in Chinese tourists in Golden Week after year-ago lull

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Thailand expects jump in Chinese tourists in Golden Week after year-ago lull

By Orathai Sriring, Satawasin Staporncharnchai

 

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FILE PHOTO: People are seen on a beach at Ko Kut island in Trat Province, Thailand October 27, 2018. REUTERS/Jorge Silva

 

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand is set to see a jump in visitors from China during the “Golden Week” holidays this week due to relaxation of visa rules and as safety worries after a boat accident last year recede, industry executives said.

 

While a recent rebound in the number of visitors from China, Thailand's biggest source of tourists, is encouraging for the industry, its outlook is weighed by China's slowing economy and a strong baht THB=TH, they said.

 

Chinese tourists accounted for about 27% of Thailand’s record 38.3 million arrivals last year, and tourism is a key driver of growth in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy.

 

About 250,000 Chinese tourists are expected to come to Thailand during the long break from October 1 to 7, said Vichit Prakobgosol, president of the Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA).

 

That would be a jump of 38% from the 181,000 Chinese tourists who visited Thailand during the break last year. A boat accident in July 2018 off its resort island of Phuket that killed 47 Chinese tourists dampened arrivals due to safety concerns.

 

“Compared with last year, we should see a big jump. Visa fee waivers are also helping,” said Vichit.

 

Thailand has tried to lure back Chinese holidaymakers and to boost the overall sector by waiving visa fees paid by visitors from several countries, including China.

 

Supawan Tanomkieatipume, president of the Thai Hotels Association, also expects more than 200,000 Chinese visitors during the break, though hotel bookings remain low.

 

“There are not many bookings from China yet, probably because the Chinese economy is not that good,” she said.

 

Also, many tourists don’t book hotels long in advance, while the strong baht may be a concern for some, she added.

 

The baht is Asia’s best performing currency this year, up 6% against the dollar. It was at 30.64 per dollar on Tuesday.

 

“If it breaks 30, tourism will be bad,” ATTA’s Vichit said.

 

However, he predicts 11 million Chinese tourists this year, up from 10.5 million last year.

 

Kasikorn Research Center said the number of Chinese tourists is on recovery after hitting a million in August, while Hong Kong’s riots could turn more visitors to Thailand.

 

The government believes higher Chinese visitors will help the number of overall foreign arrivals reach its target of 40 million this year, said government spokeswoman Narumon Pinyosinwat.

 

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-- © Copyright Reuters 2019-10-01

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1 hour ago, Chazar said:

Whens the next accident  due?

Quote

Thailand is set to see a jump in visitors from China during the “Golden Week” holidays this week

This week, looks like.

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2 hours ago, snoop1130 said:

Supawan Tanomkieatipume, president of the Thai Hotels Association, also expects more than 200,000 Chinese visitors during the break, though hotel bookings remain low.

 

“There are not many bookings from China yet, probably because the Chinese economy is not that good,” she said.

 

Also, many tourists don’t book hotels long in advance, while the strong baht may be a concern for some, she added.

And of course it's not necessary to consider that a big percentage of them book on airnbnb and co.

In Pattaya for example, while most of the hotels are struggling trying to fill at least half of the rooms condos like The Base and others  are totaly full of chineses tourists and very very busy all the time.

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3 hours ago, BuckBee said:

they had visa fee waiver for absolute ages lol .

Who picking up the waiver free for the Chinese and the Indians the farang when I payed £130 for a multi tourist visa last year this year £160 just milking u for the free waiver

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I find the hordes of Chinese tourists and the way they 'swarm' rather off putting.

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Great !!!

Resort pools will now be full of Chinese washing their clothes.

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8 hours ago, snoop1130 said:

while Hong Kong’s riots could turn more visitors to Thailand

That's a riot.

Now we're back on the Chinese as the saviours and less reliant on the Indians.

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1 hour ago, Reigntax said:

Great !!!

Resort pools will now be full of Chinese washing their clothes.

Taking a dump 

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10 hours ago, snoop1130 said:

overall foreign arrivals reach its target of 40 million this year, said government spokeswoman

40 million new targets in town ,its like shooting fish in a barrel ....

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10 hours ago, snoop1130 said:

Thailand expects jump in Chinese tourists in Golden Week after year-ago lull

So no good news then.......LOL

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About 250,000 Chinese tourists are expected to come to Thailand

That would be a jump of 38%

“There are not many bookings from China yet, probably because the Chinese economy is not that good,”

 

I guess they will be sleeping under bridges!

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This month seems like the worst month for a long time

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