The new Thailand’s tourism promotion campaign "2015 Discover Thainess” has been unveiled for the ASEAN countries at the ASEAN Tourism Forum 2015.
The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is participating in this forum in Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar, from 22 to 29 January 2015. The forum, largest regional travel and tourism event, is a cooperative regional effort to promote the ASEAN region as one tourist destination where Asian hospitality and cultural diversity are at its best.
TAT cited the launch of the campaign as important, as ASEAN countries are expected to be among the top sources of visitor arrivals in 2015, when the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) takes effect. It said that improved infrastructure will strengthen transportation networks between Thailand and its border-crossing neighbors, namely Malaysia, Myanmar, Lao PDR, and Cambodia.
The 2015 Discover Thainess campaign emphasizes the priceless treasures of Thailand and underpins the kingdom’s tourism competitive advantage. The marketing messages will highlight the concept of Creative Tourism, under which tourists can experience the Thai way of life, Thai culture and hands-on Thai activities, such as Thai boxing, Thai massage, Thai cooking, and Thai classical dance.
As part of the campaign, TAT is recommending 12 hidden gems – emerging new provincial destinations that ASEAN tourists should not miss, especially repeat travelers. All these places are renowned for their unique history, culture, and lifestyle. For example:
Northeast: Buri Ram and Loei – Loei is close to the border with Thailand’s neighbor, Lao PDR, while Buri Ram is on the border with Cambodia. Visitors can now drive across both borders.
North: Phetchabun, Lampang, and Nan: These provinces are important stopovers on the route to Chiang Mai in North Thailand.
East: Chanthaburi and Trat: These are also emerging provinces close to the border with Cambodia. Visitors can now drive across the border to Cambodia.
South: Trang, Nakhon Si Thammarat, and Chumphon: These provinces in southern Thailand boast beautiful beaches and wonderful new boutique hotels.
Central: Samut Songkhram and Ratchaburi: These are culturally-rich provinces on the route to the popular seaside resort of Cha-am/Hua Hin.
In addition, TAT has allocated specific "Happiness” activity themes for each month of this year.
In 2014, Thailand welcomed 24.77 million international visitors. Out of this number, 6.6 million were from ASEAN, accounting for 26.72 percent of the total market share.
In 2015, TAT has set a target of 28 million international visitors, generating an estimated 1.35 trillion baht (41 billion US dollars) from tourist arrivals. Out of this number, 7.4 million visitors, with 20.46 billion baht (6.2 billion dollars) in revenue are projected to come from ASEAN countries.