HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]:

Tourist entrepreneurs from Thailand’s east head north

Chiang Mai artists contribute to major peace project

THAI holds customer services seminar for cargo agents

Mae Hong Son expresses concern over suspension of THAI flights

Fly with Thai AirAsia at Tesco Lotus

Loy Krathong festival to cover nine days

Tourist entrepreneurs from Thailand’s east head north

Autsadaporn Kamthai

To introduce tourist attractions in the central provinces of Chonburi and Samut Prakarn to people in the North, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Central Office, Region 3 in cooperation with the Chonburi Provincial Administration Organization (PAO) and Chonburi Attraction Club arranged the tourism road show in four prominent northern provinces.

Deputy Governor Prinya Parnthong (second left) talks to an entrepreneur during his visit to the road show.

Many tourism-related enterprises in Chonburi and Samut Prakarn joined the trip. The road show trip started from Phitsanulok, and continued to Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai and Lampang.

The Chonburi road show was held at Duangtawan Hotel, Chiang Mai on September 15. Chonburi entrepreneurs offered special packages to encourage northerners to visit them. “The road show invites Lanna people to visit tourist sites in different parts of the country and provide the chance for tourism-related enterprises between the two regions to network,” said Dr Pichai Sonjaeng, chairman of the Chonburi Attraction Club and director of the Bangsaen Institute of Marine Science, Burapha University.

Having decided to build networks between enterprises in the North and the East, Dr Pichai was confident it would draw tourists from China to visit Thailand, by traveling first to the North and then continuing on to the East, to bring Thailand more tourism income.

For this year, the Chonburi Attraction Club has set its goal to increase the number of domestic and foreign tourists by 10 percent. The number of tourists is over a million each year.

Dr Pichai said that Chonburi province had a high security system for tourists, especially in the larger hotels, so that there was no international organized crime against tourists who visited the cities.

Chonburi is promoting its Tourist Visa Card, which can be used as a discount card, and special educational tour packages to visit, for example the Underwater World and Butterfly Garden.

For more details please contact Dr Pichai at 0-1815-8473 or [email protected]

Next month, the road show will head to the Northeast region.

Chiang Mai artists contribute to major peace project

Novica announces launch of World Peace division

Pornupa (Pia) Wunna <http://www.>, the popular international gifts and home d้cor web site affiliated with National Geographic, announced the launch of its new World Peace Project division, featuring a “Paintings for Peace” exhibit and hundreds of peace-themed gifts and home decor offerings, created by artists and artisans worldwide.

“Dharma cuddle” by Thai artist Raewat Wongla

More than 80 Thai master artisans and artists, 50 from Chiang Mai alone, contributed to this project. Proud to share with the world their own vision of peace ceramists, jewelers, wood carvers, painters, weavers etc, set to craft creative works of arts with Thai and Lanna flair.

Launched at the behest of artists and artisans around the world, Novica’s peace project is believed to be the largest of its kind, bridging races, cultures, religions, and continents.

“Peace brothers” by Thai artist Anurak Chaijit

“So many artists around the world began submitting peace-themed art that we finally decided to launch a World Peace division of Novica,” said Roberto Milk, co-founder of He said the positive response has been overwhelming, from artisans and customers alike.

“Novica’s goal remains, as always, to dramatically improve the lives of more and more artisans in developing nations each year, while actively working to help preserve traditional cultures and skills,” Milk said. “Now, with Novica’s new World Peace division, we’re able to provide a specific exhibit and retail space for our many artists around the world who have been inspired to create peace-themed works of art.”

Novica, in association with National Geographic, is headquartered in Los Angeles, with seven regional offices in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. Founded five years ago, Novica recently expanded to represent more than 10,000 international artists and artisans, including 2,000 master artists. It is the largest Web site of its kind in the world, offering more than 20,000 limited edition and unique gifts and home decor items. Unlike traditional retail channels, Novica works directly with artists and artisans through its seven international offices.

THAI holds customer services seminar for cargo agents

Thai Airways International (THAI) Cargo and Mail Commercial Department, held a Customer Services seminar at the Rama Gardens Hotel in Bangkok for its agents on its ‘THAI Cargo, Thai Care’ theme launched in May this year to encourage customer satisfaction.

Charnchai Singtoroj, THAI’s managing director, Cargo and Mail Commercial Department, said that the objective was to inform its agents of the progress of the Cargo and Mail Commercial Department at the Suvarnabhumi Airport. Opinions and suggestions from THAI’s customers were also discussed to improve the quality of its services and products.

At Suvarnabhumi Airport, THAI’s Cargo and Mail Commercial Department will cover a total area of 90,000 square meters, capable of handling 1.26 million tons of cargo annually. A major plus is that the whole international terminal area will be a Customs Free Zone. Transit shipments can be repacked in the Free Zone area without customs formalities.

THAI’s Cargo and Mail Commercial Department currently serves 47 customer airlines equivalent to 63 percent of the market share in Thailand.

Mae Hong Son expresses concern over suspension of THAI flights

The governor of Thailand’s northern province of Mae Hong Son warned on September 16 that the decision by Thai Airways International Public Company Limited (THAI) to suspend its Chiang Mai-Mae Hong Son flights in November could deal a heavy blow to the province’s tourism industry.

Suphot Laowansiri said that he would ask THAI to reconsider its decision to halt its flights to Mae Hong Son in November for the purposes of aircraft maintenance, noting that November was a major tourism month in the province.

Normally the airline operates two aircraft on its Chiang Mai-Mae Hong Son route, but one of its planes is being held at the Mae Hong Son Airport after a recent malfunction, and the airline has not indicated when it will be put back in service.

Mae Hong Son derives its principal source of income from tourism, with most tourists arriving by plane. November is particularly important for the province’s tourism industry as visitors normally flock to the Bua Tong Festival in Khun Yuan district. Suphot warned that rumors of the suspension of THAI flights were already having an adverse impact on the province’s tourism business. However, Suthep Khemthong, director of Mae Hong Son Airport, hinted that the situation might be resolved by the Department of Aviation’s bringing in alternative aircraft on the route. But he added that he had not yet been officially informed by THAI of the decision to suspend the operations. (TNA)

Fly with Thai AirAsia at Tesco Lotus

Thai AirAsia sales counters at nine outlets in Thailand

Thai AirAsia has signed an agreement with Tesco Lotus to expand the airline’s distribution channels throughout Thailand. Since mid-September, passengers can book or pay for their flights directly at Thai AirAsia sales counters at five Tesco Lotus outlets in Bangkok. Four more sales counters will open shortly at outlets outside Bangkok.

Tesco Lotus outlets in Bangkok, Bangkapi, Bang Yai, Rangsit, Seacon Square and Sukhumvit, plus the new ones in Chiang Mai, Hat Yai, Phuket and Udon Thani.

At Tesco Lotus sales counters, passengers can pay by cash or credit cards. Two Thai AirAsia staff are available at each sales counter to assist.

Tassapon Bijleveld, CEO, Thai AirAsia said, “I am delighted with our partnership with Tesco Lotus, which helps us strengthen our distribution channels. With Thai AirAsia sales counters at nine Tesco Lotus outlets, we offer a convenient way for our passengers to book easily our cheap fares. Both Tesco Lotus and Thai AirAsia target identical customer profiles and our association is a win-win situation for both of us.”

Loy Krathong festival to cover nine days

Autsadaporn Kamthai

This year’s Loy Krathong festival will be bigger and better, in honor of HM the Queen’s 72nd anniversary, says the municipality.

Loy Krathong, known in the North as the “Yi Peng” festival, will be a grand celebration from November 19-27, said Chiang Mai Mayor Boonlert Buranupakorn in an official announcement. It will feature entertainment to attract tourists to the city, he added.

Activities will be held at the Three Kings Monument, the Thapae Gate multi-purpose stage, in front of the governor’s residence and at the Municipality office.

There will be a beauty contest to find Miss Yi Peng (AKA Miss Noppamas beauty contest), traditional arts competitions, local products’ fair, walking street, ‘kom loy’ hot air balloons, processions with both large and small Krathong floats, and many other highlights.

All the activities will have a traditional Lanna atmosphere and each venue will be decorated in Lanna style.

Income generated will be given to HM the Queen’s fund to support charity projects under her royal patronage.