Songkran gets Thais travelling

BANGKOK , 2 April 2018: The daily passenger tally on tour buses from Bangkok to the provinces during the annual Songkran holiday, 10 to 15 April, will average 200,000 while 180,000 passengers will use airlines.

Transport officials made the assessment, late last week, as the countdown begins to the nation’s most popular annual festival.

The mass exodus of Bangkok residents, who head to the provinces during the Songkran Festival to reunite with their families, begins in earnest 11 April.

By the time the festival closes tourism officials claim 3 million Thais will have travelled over the festival week, up 12% on last year. Most of them will travel by private car, hire vans, buses or by train.

By 12 April more than 200,000 passengers will be boarding 8,853 daily bus departures at terminals in Bangkok, an increase of 2,690 departures when compared with last year.

From Bangkok’s two airports, Don Mueang and Suvarnabhumi, officials estimate airlines will add 1,987 flights to offer 8,082 daily flights that will accommodate 181,547 passengers daily during the festival week.

That’s the traffic assessment for outbound trips 11 to 13 April and again on 15 to 16 April for the return trips.

Meanwhile the Tourism Authority of Thailand is promoting the festival in Bangkok and at 12 tourist destinations around the country.

TAT is focusing on Samut Prakan, Ayutthaya, Suphan Buri, Chon Buri, Sukhothai, Chiang Mai, Lampang, Nakhon Phanom, Nong Khai, Khon Kaen, Phuket, and Songkhla with festival dates starting as early as 7 April and running until 20 April.

During 12 to 16 April, TAT expects tourism spending from foreign and Thai travellers to reach THB 19.8 billion up 18% over the same period last year.

Of that total, THB 9.4 billion (up 21%) is the estimated spend for 530,000 foreign tourists (up 13%) visiting Thailand during the Songkran week.

Domestic tourism spend is estimated at THB 10.44 billion (up 15%) and around 3 million trips (up 12%).


  1. I’d like to suggest every institution calculating and forecasting the gains of Songkran to also calculate and forecast its downsides or negative balance sheet due to deaths, injuries, damage, accidents while travelling, impact on water resources, outbound travel costs, energy consumption and etc. We would really see the net benefit of Songkran in the real-life context.

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