-Thailand braced for Songkran festival.
Travel Business Review - 05 April 2013
The government and the tourism department in Thailand are bracing themselves for the Songkran festival, which will attract around 2.7 million tourists to the nation.
According to figures released by the Tourism Authority of Thailand, about 2.71 million domestic and foreign tourists are to take part in the five-day Songkran celebration that is scheduled to begin next week, and based on the authorities' past figures, that will represent a 10 percent increase in the number of tourists compared to last year. In terms of capital inflows, it is expected that tourism operators alone will earn close to BHT11.12bn from Thai and foreign tourists during the festival.
While the festival is expected to see about 2.03 million Thais congregate, some 678,000 foreign visitors are also expected to take part. Hotels and resorts in major tourist destinations such as Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Hat Yai and Phuket are reporting that they are at least 70 percent booked. The Thailand Tourism Authority also said that it was expecting an increase in the number of people coming by air, as 117 charter flights with 31,973 seats had booked space at international airports during the celebrations.
Songkran festivals are to be held in the cities of Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Sukhothai, Suphanburi, Ayutthaya, Chon Buri, Samut Prakan, Khon Kaen, Nakhon Phanom, Nongkhai, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Songkhla and Phuket from April 9 to 21. The department is looking to conduct tourism fairs in as many places as possible to promote tourism in all regions.
To help tourists, the Thai Tourist Police are promoting the use of an application called Tourist Buddy, which is now available at the iTunes store. The application will work with iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPad and is packed with travel and safety advice for tourists and travellers to the country.
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