Thailand tourism recovery expected: agents

Staff writer, with CNA

Sat, Mar 29, 2014 - Page 3

Thailand is regaining consideration as a vacation destination after political unrest there has shown signs of easing, travel agents said yesterday at the International Spring Travel Fair in Taipei.

“We have seen a significant increase in inquiries about tours to Thailand recently,” said Nikky Wang, a manager at Taipei-based Best Way Travel.

Compared with the market’s low point in January, when clashes between the Thai government and anti-government protesters reached their peak, the number of Thailand-bound travel groups next month operated by Best Way could triple to 40 per month, Wang said.

The Thai New Year next month, known as the Songkran festival, could also help drive up interest, according to Star Travel Corp.

“We are optimistic about the recovery of Thai tourism, as the country is traditionally one of the most popular travel destinations for local people,” company manager Stephanie Chen said.

About 56,000 Taiwanese travelers visited Thailand during the first two months in 2014, a 34 percent year-on-year decline, according to Taiwan’s Tourism Bureau.