Pattaya Daily News

30 December 2006 :: 08:12:52 am 26032

TAT London releases latest 2006 visitor figures

The Tourism Authority of Thailand’s UK and Ireland office has announced its visitor figures for January to April 2006, with visitors from the UK reaching an impressive 258,666 in the first four months of the year, an increase of 10.39 per cent on the previous year’s statistics.
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February 2006 was the busiest month with 65,596 UK arrivals, followed by April, March and January. At the start of 2006, TAT set its target for UK visitor arrivals for the year at 700,000 and if growth continues at the current rate, is set to exceed this.

Annual analysis of visitor arrival figures for 2005 in global terms puts the UK and Ireland in sixth place after Malaysia (1,342,988), Japan (1,188,871), Korea (816,501), Singapore (797,782), China (767,782) with some 735,000 visitors to Thailand during 2005. It is interesting to note the UK/Ireland alone produces more visitor arrivals than both the second and third biggest markets in Europe – Germany (2nd) and France (3rd) combined visitor arrivals to Thailand for 2005 totalled 706,827.

Between January – October 2006, visitor arrivals at Bangkok International Airport totalled 7,922,231, up 15.97% over the same period of 2005. European arrivals were up 17.78 per cent to 2,099,159 while the UK remains the top source of arrivals from Europe, up by 7.96 per cent to 540,401.

Commenting on the figures, Khun Tanes Petsuwan, Director, TAT London said “Following the challenges that 2005 brought us, these figures demonstrate that Thailand has bounced back. Feedback from tour operators is incredibly positive – Thailand is currently selling extremely well and the UK market is the most important in Europe. However, complacency is not an option – 2007 will bring a whole stream of new, luxury boutique hotels on board to underline our ‘CHIC by Thailand’ marketing campaign message, along with new visitor attractions and the development of emerging beach resorts such as Trang, Koh Yao, Ko Chang and Ko Racha.”Nikki Davies, PR & Marketing Manager, Trailfinders, agrees, ‘Thailand is an extremely popular destination with Trailfinders clients and has always featured within our top five countries in relation to passenger numbers. We continue to see strong growth levels in the ever popular beach resorts of Phuket and Koh Samui with Krabi and Hua Hin also performing well. Koh Lanta Yai, Koh Chang and Khao Lak continue to attract the discerning traveller while demand for the range of new chic, boutique hotels is ever increasing with The five-star Sarojin in Khao Lak flying off the shelves since it was featured in April 2006. Northern Thailand is also showing a strong growth and is up 32% year on year.’

 Tamara Diethelm, Product Manager Far East, Kuoni, added, ‘Thailand has had a fantastic year … Its great to see it doing so well especially at the upper end of the market. We look forward to seeing the growth continue in 2007.’

For more information about travel to Thailand, visit www.tourismthailand.co.uk or contact Abigail Silver, Marketing & PR Manager, UK & Ireland, Tourism Authority of Thailand Tel: 0207 9252511 Fax: 0207 9252512 E-mail: abigail@tourismthailand.co.uk

Reporter : Warina Punyawan   Photo : PDN staff   Category : Tourism News

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