Japan attracts Thai travellers
BANGKOK, 23 July 2012: Japan continues to be a top destination for Thais during the first six months of 2012 as the market achieves a double digit growth.
On the sidelines of the Visit Japan FIT (Free Independent Tourists) Travel Seminar 2012, the Japan National Tourism Organisation executive director, Hiroshi Masuda, told TTR Weekly independent travel was on the rise.
“Last year we closed the year with 145,000 Thais visiting Japan, down 32.5% due to the quake disaster in Japan and severe floods in Thailand,” said Mr Masuda. “However, we picked up very fast during the first half of this year with an 18.3% increase compared with our best year on record 2010.”
“Independent bookings have grown 50% and for the first half of the year it represented 60,000 to 70,000 trips,” he added.
Most of the visits were repeat business from travellers who had visited the country on a tour group for the first time and wanted to return to explore the country by themselves.
The introduction of multiple entry visas has helped push up the figures.
The top five tourists suppliers to Japan are South Korea, China, Taiwan, United States and Hong Kong while Thailand ranks sixth just ahead of Australia.
Thai tourists stay for a week and spend around Bt47,000 to Bt48,000 on land arrangements.