BANGKOK, 10 July 2019: Predictably ‘quality’ is this year’s tourism catchphrase courtesy of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, a message that didn’t turn heads at the Monday presentation of the agency’s Tourism Action Plan 2020.
But travel executives share the TAT’s enthusiasm to gear up plans for the upcoming 60th-year-anniversary celebrations in 2020.
Both TAT and Thai Airways International celebrate their 60th anniversaries next year and give or take a year it marks the birth of what is Thailand’s tourism industry today.
The clarion call from TAT focused on the delivery of quality tourism while spreading sustainable benefits to secondary destinations across the country.
TAT’s revenue target sets the marker at a 10% increase to achieve THB2.2 trillion (USD1.3 billion) and while the agency avoided references to counting heads, an earlier forecast suggested tourist volume would reach 40 million trips this year.
Addressing leaders of the Thai tourism private sector following a week-long Tourism Action Plan meetings held in Udon Thani, TAT governor Yuthasak Supasorn said the completion of 60 years is an opportunity for reflection on past achievements while calling for stringent measures to ensure careful management going forward.
TAT will be closely aligning its strategies with the policies and plans of the National Economic and Social Development Board, Thailand’s national planning agency, whose secretary general, Thosaphorn Sirisamphan, is also the current chairman of the TAT board.
Apart from revenue targets, TAT has also set clear directions to move the Thai tourism industry forward from mass tourism to responsible tourism with an emphasis on revenue-generating quality tourists.
TAT will launch a nationwide campaign to mark its 60th anniversary with core messages highlighting the importance of responsible tourism and being good hosts under the theme of “Next steps towards a sustainable Thailand”.
This campaign will be delivered to three target groups: TAT staff, the Thai people, and Thai tourism stakeholders.
Meanwhile, “Amazing Thailand Week” promotions are also planned by TAT’s overseas offices in international markets.
For the domestic market, TAT will categorise customers into various segments; such as Gen X, Gen Y, family and millennial family, retirees, women, first jobber, multi-gen, and corporate.
In the foreign markets, TAT will focus on specific quality markets with the catchword ‘Go’ to reach out to middle-upper income groups (Go High). It will seek first-time visitors in new markets and in the long-standing source markets (Go New Customer). It will also attempt to balance out the seasonality factor and generate more demand in the rainy season (Go Low).
Alongside efforts to build a strong image to maintain Thailand’s competitive advantages, other products will be developed and marketed such as homestays, walking streets and local cuisine (Go Local). Meanwhile, digital technology will be devised to reach customers (Go Digital).
The core communication marketing theme will remain “Open to the New Shades” that focuses on providing positive and unexpected experiences. Following on from the long-standing Amazing Thailand slogan, widely recognised as one of the most impressive brand campaigns in Asia, the future advertising campaigns will continue to specific target groups and highlight the friendliness and hospitality of the Thai people.
Overall, the objective is to maintain pace and position in the rankings of preferred destinations. TAT aspires to lift tourism revenue so the country ranks in the top six revenue earners worldwide and in the top three for the loyalty index in the Asia Pacific.