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TAT Spread Happiness & Built Confidence for Tourists & Communities with Happy Paradise Campaign

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TAT Spread Happiness & Built Confidence for Tourists & Communities with Happy Paradise Campaign - TRAVELINDEXThe Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) launched the Happy Paradise Campaign to present tourism products and services, bringing impressions and new experiences to tourists in the Phuket Sandbox programme through the Happy Paradise Campaign while supporting the local communities and local culture.

Giving Happy Paradise Welcome Kit & Happy Paradise Souvenir to the Phuket Sandbox Tourists.

The reopening program of the pilot provinces to welcome back international visitors started with the Phuket Sandbox programme on the past July 1, 2021. To July 31, 2021, there are about 14,000 tourists in the Phuket Sandbox programme which generates more than 829-million-baht income. In order to bring impressions to tourists and support the communities, TAT has launched the Happy Paradise Campaign to welcome tourists back, bringing impressions and confidence in traveling in Thailand, as well as spreading income to southern local communities and tourism entrepreneurs in the Sealed Routes: Phuket, Krabi, Phang-nga, Ko Samui, Ko Tao, and Ko Pha-Ngan.

Happy Paradise by TAT Tourism Authority of ThailandThe Happy Paradise Campaign presents tourism products and services while attaching importance to establishments awarded the safety and health standard under the SHA+ symbol through various Happy Paradise activities. One of the activities is giving 1,000 Happy Paradise Welcome Kits to international visitors who arrived in Phuket on 12-14 August 2021. The welcome kit consists of the Tourism Ambassador 2021 Special Edition badge and the Journal Book. Tourists can get a special discount by showing the badge to participating establishments in the Sealed Routes.

Moreover, all tourists who stay in SHA+ hotels are also given the Happy Paradise Souvenirs which are a unique local product from southern communities:

1. Manorah beaded keychain from Phatthalung,
2. Pandanus phone bag from Krabi,
3. Batik notebook from Phuket,
4. Rubber tree phone/picture holder from Trang,
5. Batik pants from Phuket,
6. Batik mat from Krabi,
7. Batik face mask with pearls straps from Phuket, and
8. Batik face mask with Manorah beads straps from Phatthalung.

Happy Paradise by TAT Tourism Authority of ThailandThe Happy Paradise activity also includes the shows to spread local southern culture through the Manorah Dance and Ron Rae Dance. The shows was held on 18-23 August, 2021, at the designated hotels. Last but not least, the Happy Paradise Campaign holds an online activity for tourists to participate in. Check into tourist attractions in Phuket, take photos of the Happy Paradise souvenir, and post it on social media with the hashtag #ThailandHappyParadise to get a chance to win prizes.

TAT is confident that the Happy Paradise Campaign will be another factor to help support and recover Thailand’s tourism industry, as well as generating income under a performance that focuses on safe tourism and helping the communities to stay strong.

Follow news and additional details about the campaign at:

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Why Nature Lover Need to Visit Colombia

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Why Nature Lover Need to Visit Colombia

Bogota, Colombia, August 30, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / Senseless tourism has come to an end and the world is increasingly filled with more conscious travelers. Nominated as one of the 52 countries to love in 2021 by The New York Times, Colombia is one of the trendiest destinations for this year due to its natural wealth and the sustainability practices implemented by its tourist sector. If you are a nature lover seeking for outdoor experiences, adventure, great food and breathtaking landscapes for your next vacation, after reading this article, your travel choice will be a no brainer!

Biodiversity treasures
When it comes to listing the nature wonders of Colombia, one doesn’t even know where to start. Colombia is the most biodiverse country per square kilometer; it is number one in bird diversity with more than 1,900 different species and it is also the country with the largest number of butterflies in the world —registering more than 3,600—, which means that 20% of the species of butterflies in the planet live in Colombia. All these facts, among others, make the country a perfect destination for birdwatching, whale watching, trekking, hiking and cycling while enjoying the mountains, the jungle, the desert and the Caribbean beaches, all in one! Plus, did you know that precisely because of its natural biodiversity, in Colombia you can eat a different type of fruit or seed by day, without repeating, for more than a year? Get your forks ready, foodies.

Sustainability is at the core of Colombia’s tourism promotion
Over the last few years, Colombia has recognized that its natural and cultural wealth can be enjoyed by travelers while also being protected and preserved through sustainability guidelines. “Our country stands out for its competitive advantages in terms of sustainable tourism, and we have 27 Ministry-certified sustainable tourism destinations,” said Flavia Santoro, president of ProColombia, the agency in charge of promoting tourism in the country. “Colombia is also one of the few countries in the world with a Sustainable Tourism Policy, that seeks to help develop a more responsible and resilient tourism industry that preserves our culture and the environment.”

Well-prepared tourist guides and tourists as well!
To inspire both local guides as well as international travelers and educate them on the country’s efforts towards building a trustable and strong industry, Colombia released earlier this year a nature guide that features easy-to-understand information of its responsible and sustainable practices. The Illustrative Handbook for Nature Tourism Guides includes information about the country’s natural wealth, as well as 50 podcasts and factsheets available in Spanish and English. It’s free of charge and available here. This project was supported by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), “Riqueza Natural” Program, the Humboldt Institute, the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), and Punto Aparte Editors.

Top cycling destination
What a better way to get to know a country than riding its roads? In addition to finding incredible routes where world cycling greats such as Egan Bernal and Nairo Quintana do their trainings, due to its equatorial location, traveling 500 meters in Colombia represents moving from one ecosystem to another. In fact, and taking advantage of the potential these experiences have, ProColombia is launching this new tourism strategy called Colombia, the top cycling destination, to attract ‘bike geeks’ from all over the world!

Great air connectivity
During 2021, international air connectivity in Colombia has made significant progress, and airlines such as American Airlines, JetBlue, Spirit, among others, are betting on Colombia as a connectivity hub. An additional fact for the American travelers: currently, there are 351 weekly frequencies available between Colombia and US cities such as Miami, Fort Lauderdale, New York, Orlando, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Los Angeles and Washington. That means 61,944 seats available per week!

Unique types of accommodation
In a destination where nature and sustainability stand out, the whole perfect package is closed with an eco-accommodation offer. Unique places and unconventional rooms are offered to stay and enjoy a gratifying evening, such as glamping, villas, farms, and private houses. Projects like Secretos de Colombia or many other glamping hotels such as Nido del Condor and Color de Mis Rêves are great examples. These experiences are well known by its contact with nature and the facility for visitors to get close to the sky from their room comfort, nothing better to end the day than a glass ceiling to watch the stars.

For more information about Colombia, please visit VisitColombia.org

First published at TravelCommunication.net – Global Travel News

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Saudi Tourism Authority Expands Partnership with Aviareps

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Saudi Tourism Authority Expands Partnership with Aviareps - TOURISMSAUDIARABIA.com - TRAVELINDEXMunich, Germany, August 26, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Saudi Tourism Authority has opened a commercial office in Malaysia covering the Southeast Asia region as part of its strategy to engage the tourism trade in key source markets and raise awareness of Saudi, the authentic home of Arabia, as travelers around the world dream of exploring exotic destinations once more.

The destination reopened to vaccinated international visitors at the beginning of August.

STA now has representative offices in eleven markets serving 21 countries, with an eventual goal of having a 15 offices around the world to expand the reach of the Authority’s activities.

Fahd Hamidaddin, CEO of the Saudi Tourism Authority:

“STA is focused on enhancing its ability to deliver a truly global scale offering by investing resources today in the network that will drive our business for the future. We are building an integrated global team of professionals to showcase Saudi’s diverse offering of cultural adventures, world-class heritage sites, and authentic Arabian hospitality.”

The Malaysia office will be responsible for trade and consumer marketing activities, expanding the reach and relevance of Saudi’s tourism offer, and working with tour operators, travel agents, and other industry stakeholders to build awareness and drive conversion in line with STA’s strategy and mission. The Southeast Asia representative office is being set up with the support of the region’s leading aviation & destination marketing representative company, Aviareps Malaysia as its in-market representative covering the Southeast Asia region.

Kelvin Ong, Vice President, Southeast Asia for Aviareps Group:

“Southeast Asian nations have a strong affinity with Saudi as a destination and many of the region’s travelers have already experienced the country’s legendary hospitality while visiting the country on pilgrimage. We have already formed a dedicated STA team based in Malaysia to cover the region.”

Shazlin Ahmad, Country Manager for STA in Southeast Asia:

“Opening a dedicated office to serve this market creates an opportunity to expand the appeal of Saudi as a compelling leisure destination by sharing with travelers the diverse landscapes, bustling cities, abundant attractions, and storied historical sites that make Saudi unique. We are confident that Saudi’s diverse offering will be appealing to all demographics from the region. We have already begun outreach into the Southeast Asia’s tourism trade ecosystem and the response has been very positive. We are actively seeking opportunities to co-invest with partners who are keen to add Saudi as an exciting new destination in their portfolio.”

Since opening its borders to international tourism in September 2019, Saudi rapidly established itself as the fastest-growing tourism destination in the world, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council. Despite the global shutdown of leisure tourism in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, STA continued to invest to prepare the destination for a return to normalcy.

In 2020 STA delivered a domestic tourism campaign that saw visitor spend across target destinations between July and September increase by more than 30% compared to the equivalent period the year before.

An international brand awareness campaign launched at the beginning of 2021 extends across 26 countries and 13 languages, with significant investment in outdoor, broadcast, and digital advertising.

Fahd Hamidaddin, CEO of the Saudi Tourism Authority:

“Saudi has a wealth of iconic sites for travelers to experience when borders reopen and we are ready to welcome visitors from around the world. By investing now in brand awareness and in our network of international offices, we are seeking to expand the global reach and relevance of these sites and integrating new ways of thinking and delivering on our mandate.”

To support the international and domestic tourism trade ecosystem, STA is introducing Saudi Expert, a comprehensive digital platform that provides partner companies with data, insights, destination information, and creative assets in real-time.

The new platform is intended to ensure that DMCs, tour operators, and other stakeholders have on-demand access to the information they need to build their business.

Fahd Hamidaddin, CEO of the Saudi Tourism Authority:

“Tourism businesses need to be more agile than ever to respond to sudden changes in the environment. Agility depends on a constant supply of up-to-date information, and our goal is to get that information to our partners almost as soon as we get it ourselves. We are working at pace to help our partners introduce the authentic home of Arabia to more people than ever before.”

About Aviareps
Aviareps is the world’s leading international representation, marketing and communications company for aviation, tourism, hospitality, and food and beverage brands. Founded in Germany in 1994 with the ambition to help clients to step into global markets, the company’s global network now expands around the world to six continents.

The Aviareps service portfolio includes extensive expertise in representation and sales, marketing and communications, business development, IT solutions and financial services. In addition to their well-established General Sales Agent (GSA) services and tourism marketing representation, Aviareps provides more than 250 clients with support in digital marketing, advertising, public relations, crisis communications, social media management, event coordination, sales, web design and more.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Saudi Arabia Tourism Opens South-East Asia Office in Malaysia

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Saudi Arabia Tourism Opens South-East Asia Office in Malaysia - TOURISMSAUDIARABIA.com - TRAVELINDEXKuala Lumpur, Malaysia, August 21, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Saudi Tourism Authority has opened a commercial office in Malaysia covering the South-East Asia region as part of its strategy to engage the travel trade to raise awareness of the destination in key source markets in the region.

The Malaysia office will be responsible for trade and consumer marketing activities, expanding the reach and relevance of Saudi’s tourism offer and working with tour operators, travel agents and other industry stakeholders to build awareness and drive conversion in line with Saudi Tourism Authority’s strategy and mission.

For a comprehensive travel guide on Saudi Arabia, go to TourismSaudiArabia.com

Saudi Tourism Authority’s new office is being set up with the support of aviation and destination marketing representative company, Aviareps Malaysia, as its in-market representative covering the South-east Asia region.

“We are confident that Saudi’s diverse offering will be appealing to all demographics from the region,” said Shazlin Ahmad, country manager for STA in South East Asia. “We have already begun outreach into the South-east Asia’s tourism trade ecosystem and the response has been very positive. We are actively seeking opportunities to co-invest with partners who are keen to add Saudi as an exciting new destination in their portfolio.”

Since opening its borders to international tourism in September 2019, Saudi rapidly established itself as the fastest growing tourism destination in the world, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council.

Despite the global shutdown of leisure tourism in the wake of the pandemic, STA continued to invest to prepare the destination for a return to normalcy. An international brand awareness campaign launched at the beginning of 2021 extends across 26 countries and 13 languages, with significant investment in outdoor, broadcast and digital advertising.

Saudi Arabia reopened to vaccinated international visitors at the beginning of August.

To support the tourism trade ecosystem, STA is introducing Saudi Expert, a comprehensive digital platform providing partner companies such as DMCs, tour operators and other stakeholders with data, insights, destination information and creative assets in real-time to help build their businesses.

Saudi Tourism Authority now has representative offices in eleven markets serving 21 countries, with an eventual goal of having 15 offices around the world.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Thailand Confirms Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension

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Thailand Confirms Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension

Phuket, Thailand, August 18, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is pleased to announce that the Phuket Sandbox programme has received the green light from the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) to be upgraded as the “Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension” providing fully vaccinated international travellers with more options to visit multiple Thai destinations without the need to quarantine.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “The Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension programme signifies the progress of Thailand’s plan to gradually reopen to fully vaccinated international travellers within the set time frame. The launch of the Phuket Sandbox from 1 July, Samui Plus from 15 July, and Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension from 16 August will lead the way to the reopening of more pilot destinations, which are currently preparing appropriate measures to ensure the health and safety of both the tourists and local people.”

Starting from 16 August, 2021, the “Phuket Sandbox 7+7 Extension” programme allows eligible international travellers to reduce the mandatory stay in Phuket from 14 to 7 days, after which another 7 nights can be spent in Krabi (Ko Phi Phi, Ko Ngai, or Railay), Phang-Nga (Khao Lak or Ko Yao), or Surat Thani (Samui Plus – Ko Samui, Ko Pha-ngan, or Ko Tao).

The existing entry measures in place for the Phuket Sandbox programme remain unchanged for the 7+7 extension. But, travellers planning to spend another 7 nights outside of Phuket must obtain a ‘Transfer Form’ issued by their hotel in Phuket indicating that they have stayed in Phuket for 7 nights, which they will need to show together with the negative results of their two COVID-19 tests (conducted on Day 0 and Day 6-7 in Phuket).

Travelling from Phuket to the selected areas in Krabi, Phang-Nga, or Surat Thai is available only via approved routes and modes of transport.

Surat Thani (Samui Plus – Ko Samui, Ko Pha-ngan, or Ko Tao) can be reached via Bangkok Airways’ direct domestic flight on the Phuket-Ko Samui route.

Krabi (Ko Phi Phi, Ko Ngai, or Railay) can be reached by SHA Plus-certified boat and ferry services from approved piers.

Phang-Nga (Khao Lak) can be reached by SHA Plus-certified car transfer services from Phuket direct to the SHA Plus-certified hotels.

Phang-Nga (Ko Yao Noi or Ko Yao Yai) can be reached via SHA Plus-certified boat and ferry services from approved piers.

Once travellers have completed the 7-night extension in Krabi, Phang-Nga and Surat Thani (Samui Plus), and are tested negative in their third COVID-19 test (conducted on Day 12-13), they will receive a ‘Release Form’ from their hotel and will be able to continue their journey to other destinations in Thailand.

If the stay in Krabi, Phang-Nga or Surat Thani (Samui+) is less than 7 nights, travellers must proceed directly to Phuket International Airport on the day of departure. At the port of entry back into Phuket, they will need to show a plane ticket or other proof of their international travel from Phuket.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Phuket Sandbox First Month Sees in Arrivals and Revenue

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Phuket Sandbox First Month Sees in Arrivals and Revenue

Phuket, Thailand, August 6, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) would like to report that in the first month of the ‘Phuket Sandbox’ programme since its launch on 1 July, 2021, over 14,000 foreign tourists visited Phuket, and the revenue they generated for the local economy amounted to 829 million Baht.

For the period of 1-31 July, 2021, total international arrivals amounted to 14,055, with the largest source market being the USA with 1,802 arrivals. This was followed by the UK with 1,558 arrivals, Israel with 1,455 arrivals, Germany with 847 arrivals, and France with 839 arrivals.

TAT expects 100,000 foreign tourists will visit Phuket in the Third Quarter 2021 (July-September) and inject some 8.9 billion Baht of revenue into the local economy.

Fully vaccinated and able to enter Phuket without the need to quarantine, as the Phuket Sandbox programme allows, these first tourists to return to Thailand as it begins to gradually reopen to tourism came on direct international flights operated by major airlines from points around the world. This included Thai Airways International (THAI) from Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Paris, London, and Zurich, Singapore Airlines from Singapore, Etihad Airways from Abu Dhabi, Emirates from Dubai, Qatar Airways from Doha, and EL AL Israel Airlines from Tel Aviv.

Accommodation-wise, the arrivals for July saw 190,843 room nights booked at SHA Plus certified hotels. August has a further 109,694 room nights in advance bookings and September another 9,182 room nights, altogether amounting to 309,719 room nights for the July-September period.

July’s actual number of room nights far outperformed the advance bookings of 106,883 nights on the books at the beginning of July. August and September, too, are now significantly ahead in advance bookings than at this time, resulting in the current total of advance bookings for July-September almost tripling the earlier figure.

Tourists are required to stay at SHA Plus certified hotels on Phuket for their added safety. SHA Plus certification indicates a hotel meets the safety measures to control COVID-19, and also that 70% of its workforce has been fully vaccinated.

The 829 million Baht in revenue for July included 282 million Baht spent on accommodation, 194 million Baht on the purchase of products and services, 175 million Baht on food and beverage, and 124 million Baht on health and medical services. Among the 14,055 tourist arrivals, the average cost of their vacation to Phuket was 58,982 Baht.

Crucially, one of the key benefits of the Phuket Sandbox programme has been the creation of 210 million Baht in salaries for the local employees in the accommodation, restaurant, and other sectors.

All the while, the commitment of the local provincial authorities and the Thai government to safely reopen Phuket has continued. Along with the necessary health and safety measures put in place and the proper protocols effected, this also involves the vaccination programme for the island’s population. As of 30 July, 2021, 89% of the people had received their first vaccine dose, while 69% had received both doses.

With the pilot destination of Phuket – and as of 15 July, Surat Thani’s Samui, Ko Pha-ngan and Ko Tao – having reopened to tourism, the next two destinations are set to follow within August.

These are Krabi (Ko Phi Phi, Ko Ngai and Railay Beach) and Phang Nga (Khao Lak and Ko Yao), where fully vaccinated foreign tourists will be able to visit the selected areas in each destination under a 7+7 model. This model will reduce the mandatory stay in Phuket under the Phuket Sandbox programme from 14 to 7 days, following which 7 nights can then be spent in Krabi and Phang Nga.

The idea behind the 7+7 model is to provide foreign tourists with more options to visit multiple destinations during their trip to Thailand. Krabi and Phang Nga are ideal for this given their proximity to and ease of access from Phuket.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Hug Thais Tourist Offers to Launch in Phuket as Island Reopens

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Hug Thais Tourist Offers to Launch in Phuket as Island Reopens - THAILANDPhuket, Thailand, June 27, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC) to launch the ‘Hug Thais’ project to stimulate Thai and foreign tourists’ spending to revive economy.

Discover gastronomy destination Phuket and the Asia’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at Top25Restaurants.com

H.E. Mr. Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, Minister of Tourism and Sports, said, “The ‘Hug Thais’ project is the latest public-private sector initiative of TAT, the Thai government, and partners like the TCC to reinvigorate Thailand’s tourism industry and the wider national economy. Such cooperation is vital as Thailand progresses towards once again enjoying its status as a preferred tourist destination.”

The ‘Hug Thais’ project will be launched with the pilot ‘Hug Thais Hug Thais’ programme in July 2021, to coincide with the much-awaited reopening of Phuket to tourism under the ‘Sandbox’ model, which begins 1 July. This will see the island welcoming vaccinated foreign tourists without quarantine requirements and is to be followed by the subsequent reopening of other destinations in the coming months.

Among the ‘Hug Thais Hug Thais’ initiatives on offer to Thai and foreign tourists will be discounts of up to 10% when they spend 1,000 Baht or more in the retail sector, and 100 Baht cash coupons for use on their next visits at participating shops and outlets.

Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “The ‘Hug Thais Hug Thais’ project is aimed at revitalising Phuket’s tourism and service industry and in doing so, leading the way for the similar revitalisation of other destinations around Thailand.”

As the ‘Hug Thais’ project will also be introduced in other Thai destinations, TAT will provide marketing and publicity support to stimulate travel and tourism expenditure of both Thai and foreign tourists on ‘Eat More’ local food, ‘Travel More’ within Thailand, and ‘Shop More’ for products of Thailand at shops and outlets with the ‘Hug Thais’ logo.

Discover gastronomy destination Phuket and the Asia’s Best Fine Dining Restaurants at Top25Restaurants.com

The ‘Hug Thais’ project is expected to help generate an estimated of over 100 billion Baht to the Thai economy within the next six months.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Open Letter to Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Yuthasak Supasorn

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Open Letter to Tourism Authority of Thailand Governor Yuthasak Supasorn

Bangkok, Thailand, June 18, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / From Imtiaz Muqbil, Executive Editor, Travel Impact Newswire – Dear Governor Yuthasak, with the vaccination process full steam ahead, a few hiccups notwithstanding, Thai Prime Minister Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha’s speech on 16 June has paved the way for a rebound and recovery, led by Travel & Tourism. You now have a golden opportunity to build on the speech and cement your place in history, as well as that of the Tourism Authority of Thailand and Thailand at large.

When the crisis surfaced, there was a lot of gung-ho optimism that Travel & Tourism would convert it into an opportunity to REcover, REset, REstructure, REthink, REvise, REthink, REview, RE-this, RE-that. These fancy catchwords are nothing new; I REcall hearing them after each previous crisis. In REality, they delivered little or nothing on the ground.

But this crisis is different from all others in its depth, duration and severity, which is precisely why it must not lead to a REturn to the old abnormal.

For a comprehensive travel guide on Thailand, Visit Thailand – Be Happy, at VisitThailand.net

As the country’s primary tourism marketing agency, the TAT will be at the forefront of the REcovery process. No doubt, marketing, branding and image-building experts are knocking at your door seeking taxpayer money for grandiose REopening projects. Provincial destinations, airlines and tour operators are also in the queue. Because money talks, and is in equally short supply as the vaccines, it is imperative to ensure that every baht is spent in an accountable, transparent, productive and efficient manner, and produces the desired results in line with the new REalities.

I would like to REspectfully propose a few ways by which the TAT can REvamp the utilisation of its budgets and set a clear example for global national tourism organisations to follow:

Adjust the focus: What is the real objective of a tourism REcovery? Will simply measuring visitor numbers and expenditure suffice as indicators of “success”? In fact, the over-arching need of the hour is to totally REstructure and REthink these indicators. Immediate short-term results of REcovery campaigns can easily be statistically measured by the transportation sector, hotels and tour operators. The TAT now needs to raise the game and strive for more exalted targets.

Support worthy causes: Making Travel & Tourism a conduit for a more peaceful, safe and sustainable world means striving for causes such as the UN SDGs at the global level, the ASEAN Integration agenda at the regional level and the NESDC and Sufficiency-Economy targets at the local level. Many non-profit foundations, NGOs and institutions are supporting these efforts. They have huge followings, but cannot afford to hire slick salespeople to market their activities and projects. Because their work is patronised by thousands of dedicated and committed people, national tourism organisations should be reaching out to them rather than the other way around. Corporate social responsibility activities which make the world a better place, in the words of former UNWTO Secretary General Dr Taleb Rifai, is a sure-fire way of uplifting the quality of life at a destination, crafting a new reality-based image AND boosting visitor numbers.

Diversify the venues of TAT events: Most of the TAT’s press conferences and public events are are held either in-house or in hotels. These venues can easily be aligned with the broader causes, such as the Siam Society, Thai universities, the UN ESCAP conference centre, museums, the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand and other such places. They will certainly appreciate the outreach and benefit from the exposure and indigenous funding. Partnering with them could also give the TAT more positive exposure and upgrade the quality of discussion on serious tourism-related issues, which is long overdue.

Elevate the intellectual value of Travel & Tourism forums: One bitter lesson learnt from this and previous crises is that global tourism is totally at the mercy of external shocks. It is thus imperative to start exploring ways by which Travel & Tourism can influence global events, rather than be influenced by them. Stuffing the pockets of branding gurus, technobabblers, bloggers and “influencers” in pursuit of “likes” and “clicks” is a waste of time and money. Industry conferences and forums have become brain-dead platforms for preaching to the converted. The industry is bored of listening to the usual gaggle of trumpet-blowing executives from Google, TripAdvisor, Facebook, etc. Why not organise a totally overhauled industry event to discuss broader issues such as foreign policy, the next five-year NESDC plan, cryptocurrencies, climate change, the future of democracy, privacy, security, fake news and fraud?

Help the private sector to help itself: The Covid-19 crisis has decimated the private sector. But REbuilding must not mean more one-way handouts. In the boom days, dozens of Travel & Tourism industry associations emerged to REpresent their varied constituents. Most of their websites are in a mess. The TAT runs one of the Thai government’s best websites. This experience can be shared with the private sector associations. Helping the private sector to help itself is a far more cost-effective way of producing results.

Finally, be transparent: The TAT’s first female governor, Mrs Juthamas Siriwan, brought shame and dishonour upon the state enterprise with her arrest and conviction on corruption charges. Making all procurement contracts and marketing activities more open and transparent will go a long way towards ensuring that external contractors deliver the goods, and are held accountable for pork-barrel waste and inefficiencies. Other NTOs worldwide will be forced to follow suit, setting new standards for industry best-practises.

Governor Yuthasak, you were the first “outsider” to helm the TAT. I was in the TAT lobby the day you first arrived for work in August 2015, the year after a comparatively minor internal political crisis, the 2014 military coup. Since then, thanks to a flood of mass-volume Chinese and Indian tourists, visitor arrivals soared to the point where “overtourism” became a double-edged sword. That is one headache you need not worry about for years.

Having gone from feast to famine virtually overnight, global tourism has a chance to start afresh. Leaders such as yourself have a chance to make history. Old ways of doing business are fading rapidly. The industry’s modus operandi is in dire need of a “REset, REthink, REstructure” agenda system-wide. Without it, even the survival of the TAT in its present form cannot be guaranteed.

For a comprehensive travel guide on Thailand, Visit Thailand – Be Happy, at VisitThailand.net

As one of Thailand’s longest-serving travel trade journalists, I am proud to be the first to have called the kingdom The Greatest Story in Global Tourism HiSTORY. In 1987, a marketing extravaganza par excellence known as Visit Thailand Year, united the country and REvolutionised global tourism. A new sense of direction will fit perfectly within the Prime Minister’s six-month time frame for getting the industry, and the country, back on its feet. This time, however, we need to ensure that ground under those feet is also firm and stable.

Respectfully yours,

Imtiaz Muqbil
Executive Editor
Travel Impact Newswire

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

SHA Plus Certificate Awarded to 300 Tourism Businesses in Phuket

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SHA Plus Certificate Awarded to 300 Tourism Businesses in Phuket

Phuket, Thailand, June 14, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) recently presented the Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration (SHA) Plus Certificate to more than 300 tourism businesses in Phuket, as the island is preparing to welcome back fully vaccinated visitors under the ‘Phuket Sandbox’ model from 1 July, 2021.

The presentation of the SHA Plus logo by Ms. Thapanee Kiatphaiboon, TAT Deputy Governor of Tourism Products and Business, was held on 12 June, 2021, in the presence of Phuket Governor Mr. Narong Woonchiew and other local dignitaries.

Ms. Thapanee said “The ‘SHA Plus’ standard symbolises Phuket’s readiness to reopen the island, which local stakeholders have worked together to create as part of the pilot scheme.”

The ‘SHA’ logo certifies that venues and businesses have public health measures in place for COVID-19, while the ‘Plus’ sign confirms that more than 70% of employees in the organisation are fully vaccinated under the ‘Phuket Must Win’ vaccination programme.

Under the ‘Phuket Sandbox’ model, foreign visitors who arrive from 1 July, 2021, onwards will be required to book hotels, which are ‘SHA Plus’ certified for their first 14 days before being able to leave the province to other destinations in Thailand.

Currently, there are 1,389 venues and businesses across Phuket that have received the Amazing Thailand SHA certificate, and of these, more than 300 are SHA Plus-certified. The number is continuing to rise as all SHA-certified businesses in Phuket, where at least 70% of staff are inoculated, are encouraged to register for the ‘SHA Plus’ Certificate.

Meanwhile, TAT together with the Phuket Tourist Association, Thai Hotels Association – Southern Chapter, and the Southern Digital Economy Promotion Agency – Northern Southern Region are currently developing a ‘SHA Plus Booking Authentication System’ (SHABA) to be used as a confirmation mechanism for visitors joining the ‘Phuket Sandbox’, who have booked ‘SHA Plus’ hotels.

Under the ‘Phuket Sandbox’ conditions, visitors will be able to book their accommodation via OTA’s, travel agencies or directly to the ‘SHA Plus’ hotels under the conditions of the ‘Phuket Sandbox’. Hotel Reservation teams will be required to enter their guests’ bookings into the ‘SHABA’ platform, which will generate an official confirmation number and QR code.

First published at TravelCommunication.net

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

Top 25 Restaurants Phuket Will be Launched in Time for Phuket’s Re-Opening

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Bangkok, Thailand, June 7, 2021 / TRAVELINDEX / Following the announcements by the Thai Prime Minister and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to reopen Phuket and to allow vaccinated foreign tourists to visit the island without quarantine from 1st July 2021, Travelindex has announced the launch of its first “Top 25 Restaurants Phuket,” in time for the island’s reopening.

Source

First published at TravelNewsHub.com – Global Travel News

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