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Phuket officials target Middle East with tourism roadshows

Phuket tourism
Tourists in Phuket

Phuket tourism officials are planning a series of roadshows in the Middle East, in a bid to attract more visitors from the region. Thanet Tantipiriyakit, president of the Phuket Tourist Association, says tourism promotion roadshows are heading to Saudi Arabia and Oman, following a surge in visitors from both countries.

With tourism sluggish from the Chinese and other legacy tourism markets, Phuket tourism officials are chasing new markets to keep tourism alive and thriving on the island.

According to a Bangkok Post report, Thanet says similar roadshows were held for other Middle Eastern markets and the Russian market during this year’s low season.

“Phuket has seen a significant rise in tourists from Saudi Arabia, up thousands of percent since the first quarter of the year.”

The island’s tourism officials also have their eye on India and Kazakhstan. At least 70% of Kazakh visitors to Thailand opt to holiday in Phuket. Thanet points out that this has led to an increase in the number of direct flights to the island from Kazakhstan. He says the recently introduced visa exemption has led to a 300 – 400% growth in travellers from Kazakhstan.

The island is also seeing an increase in Indian visitors, which Thanet attributes to the country’s rapidly recovering economy and the fact that it’s only 4 hours by air from Phuket.

The PTA is also planning on future tourism promotions targeting Hong Kong, China, and Taiwan. Thanet says the number of Chinese visitors is currently at 30% of pre-pandemic levels.

He’s hopeful that will rise to 60 or 70%, but admits a return to pre-Covid figures is not expected anytime soon.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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