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Vol. XII No.15 - Sunday July 28 - Saturday August 10, 2013


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Update by Saichon Paewsoongnern
 
 
 
TRAVEL & TOURISM
 

TAT takes the online Voluntourism trend to the next level

“The Little Big Project” and its 5 Million worldwide viewers

Phuket’s Team Richard Browsdon from UK and Vimalin Chalermporn from Thailand were winners of the Voluntourism initiative.

Since May of this year, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT)’s online “Voluntourism” campaign called “The Little Big Project” has witnessed an overwhelming response of 4,695 applicants from around the world. Ten finalists were chosen from the global searching order to compete and raise $5,000 USD for their volunteering project during the course of a 2-week stay in Thailand. The winner of “The Little Big Project” initiative is Phuket’s Team, Richard Browsdon from UK and Vimalin Chalermporn from Thailand.
Throughout the fundraising competition over the past 3 months, all 5 teams (2 finalists per team) have shown their volunteering spirits with project development activities in 5 chosen areas like Phuket, Phangga, Chiang Rai, Phetchaburi, and Prachuap Khiri Khan.
They have also shared their experiences via personalized blogs and online media, with the winner decided by having received the highest votes from these social media channels.
This has created global awareness and inspired huge numbers of travellers from around the world to examine the emerging volunteering-based tourism trend going on in Thailand with over 5 million viewers checking in on the project via social media.
Mr. Suraphon Svetasreni, TAT Governor stated, “The Little Big Project is the first online campaign in Asia to promote the new trend of “volunteering while travelling,” more commonly known as Voluntourism, which is a response to the new generation of travellers whose attitude is to make a difference and make the world a better place, starting with themselves.”
He announced proudly that, “The Little Big Project’s Thailand-based Voluntourism digital campaign won the inaugural Digital Innovation Asia Awards as the most influential initiative to highlight the growing industry trend of Voluntourism. The award was conferred by Digital Innovation Asia with the support of the Pacific Asia Travel Association, and we are glad to see that our efforts have been recognized.” (TAT)


ASEAN Music & Culture Festival 2013

ASEAN cultural heritage

President of the Chiang Mai PAO Boonlert Buranupakorn opened the ASEAN Music and Culture Festival on July 12 at the Central Hall, Central Plaza Chiang Mai Airport.

Nopniwat Krailerg
The ASEAN Music and Culture Festival 2013 was held at Chiang Mai Hall, Central Plaza Chiang Mai Airport on July 12-14, 2013 and featured acts from around ASEAN including contemporary music and cultural performances.
Boonlert Buranupakorn, the President of the Chiang Mai Provincial Administration Organization presided over the opening ceremony on July 12. The event was organized by the Chiang Mai PAO and the Chiang Mai Municipality and featured a special lecture on “Lanna Culture and Identity of Thailand Expands to ASEAN” by well-known columnist and politician former Police Captain and historian Nitiphum Nawarat.
Pol. Capt. Nitiphum said that since Thailand has never been open to trade liberalization he thinks that the upcoming AEC will see manufacturers close and relocate to other ASEAN countries due to reduced labor and production costs. He noted that Thailand and Chiang Mai in particular must ready themselves by improving their English and their skills and retain the spirit of Lanna to help them through. He noted that the government has instituted an 840 million baht budget for students to learn Asian languages as well. He concluded that Thailand may fail if it does not strive to improve.


World Heritage status sought for Chiang Mai and Lamphun

A seminar was held at CMU Art Museum to find ways to promote the implementation of World Heritage City status for Chiang Mai and Lamphun.

Yuthapoom Bunruang
A seminar was held on July 17, 2013 at Chiang Mai University Art Museum where Anand Leetrakul, Chiang Mai University Council Committee invited representatives of UNESCO and the Fine Arts Department. The seminar was held in cooperation with Office of CMU and the Lamphun World Heritage Research and Development Project Committee to promote the two cities as World Heritage Cities.
The group is working to promote the idea and to help local people realize the value of their cities and to maintain the cultural identity of the city. Suggestions were offered from all sectors to seminar participants on how to create a network to promote the cultural and architectural heritage of both Chiang Mai and Lamphun and to obtain World Heritage status from UNESCO.


Trans-Asia opens new Taipei – Chiang Mai route

Trans – Asia Airways launched their new direct Taipei – Chiang Mai route on July 3, 2013 when the first flight landed from Taipei at Chiang Mai International Airport with 182 passengers onboard. The TAT Chiang Mai office was on hand to welcome the visitors. The new route operates twice a week, flying from Taipei to Chiang Mai on Wednesday and Saturday departing Taipei at 4:10 p.m. and arriving in Chiang Mai at 7 p.m. The flight to Taipei departs on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 8:05 p.m. and arriving in Taipei at 12:05 a.m.


China Common Project Golf Tournament 2013

The golf market in China is growing rapidly and the TAT plans to tap into that market to attract Chinese golfers to Thailand.

Nopniwat Krailerg
The Tourism Authority of Thailand has launched a new project to attract Chinese golfing tourists and to create awareness in China that Thailand is a diverse destination that offers great value for money. The “China Common Project Golf Tournament”, according to Sansern Ngaorungsi, Deputy Governor of TAT for the Asia and South Pacific Market said they had invited more than 150 tourists and media to come to Chiang Mai and play golf in 5 different golf courses. The Chinese visitors were able to play golf in some of Chiang Mai’s premier golfing destinations including Alpine Golf Resort, Chiang Mai Inthanon Golf Resort, Chiang Mai Highland Golf & Spa, Mae Jo Golf Club & Resort and Summit Valley Golf Resort during July 15-18, 2013.
There was a competition held on July 16 for all participants and in the evening an awards ceremony for the winners of the team competition and the singles competition.
The TAT hopes to attract the Chinese golf market as a high quality market with great growth opportunities as the interest in China in the sport continues to increase. Thailand has the potential and the ability with its various facilities already in place, to cater to this growing demand with its more than 100 international standard golf courses around the country. Additionally, Thailand as many high quality driving ranges and training schools with good quality, affordable trainers making it an ideal place to arrange world class golf tournaments annually such as the Royal Trophy and the Thailand Ladies Open for the LPGA.
Finally, the Deputy Governor pointed out that the TAT believes this project will help cement the perception of Thailand as the leading golf destination in South East Asia.


 
HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

TAT takes the online Voluntourism trend to the next level

ASEAN Music & Culture Festival 2013

World Heritage status sought for Chiang Mai and Lamphun

Trans-Asia opens new Taipei – Chiang Mai route

China Common Project Golf Tournament 2013

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