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Update March, 2015


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Update by Natrakorn Paewsoongnern
 
 
 
TRAVEL & TOURISM
 

TAT launches online One and Only contest to promote Discover Thainess campaign

The Tourism Authority of Thailand launched the latest contest which will allow visitors to the Kingdom to win a one month stay.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has launched yet another remarkable online contest designed to further grow exposure of the kingdom’s “Thainess” niche-market products across the global social media networks. Participants are eligible to win a FREE one-month stay in Thailand as well as a range of FREE short-stay holidays, including a top prize of a luxury package.

Non-Thai travellers from around the world as well as Thai citizens are invited to sign up for the “One and Only” contest, which was unveiled on 23 February, 2015, at a launching ceremony presided over by H.E. Mrs. Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, Minister of Tourism and Sports and Mr. Thawatchai Arunyik, Governor of TAT. For foreigners, the applications are open from now until 30 April, 2015 while Thai people can join this campaign starting in May, 2015.

Minister Kobkarn said, “The Royal Thai Government has declared 2015 as the year to “Discover Thainess”, which is in line with our national agenda to promote sustainability and accelerate economic and social development under the Royal philosophy of promoting a sufficiency economy. I would like to invite all social media users all over the world to participate enthusiastically in this unique contest which has been specially designed for them.”

Governor Thawatchai added, “We believe this innovative and creative campaign will generate a positive buzz on social media networks all over the world, and give further prominence to our key niche-market focus on “Thainess”.

The contest is sponsored by Thai Airways International, The Peninsula Bangkok, Sukhothai Heritage Resort, The Raya Surawong-Bangkok, Sri Panwa Phuket, De Naga Chiang Mai, The AETAS Bangkok, Wanaburee Resort Khao Lak, Paradise Beach Resort Samui, Chatrium Residence Bangkok, Chatrium Hotel Riverside Bangkok, Palm Beach Resort Phuket, Emporium Suites by Chatrium Bangkok, Maitria Hotel Sukhumvit 18, and Thavorn Beach Village and Spa Phuket.

In a nutshell, visitors can choose an activity from five options under the “Discover Thainess” theme: Muay Thai, traditional Thai dancing, Thai cooking, making Thai-style floral garlands, and speaking Thai. The “Discover Thainess’ website will upload a video clip for each activity to be used as a guideline for making their own video.

Visitors can film themselves enjoying the same activity, submit the clip to the contest, and get a chance to be a part of this unique and culturally rich experience.

The eligibility rules cover non-Thai citizens aged 20-45, either living in Thailand or abroad. All must be social media savvy, using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, Wechat or Weibo on a regular basis. The 3 selected teams must be able to stay in Thailand for 1 month.

In recent years, TAT has developed aggressive online and digital marketing strategies to promote tourism via all forms of new media and across all devices; such as, mobile phones, smart phones, and tablets. These have been designed to reach specific target audiences worldwide, especially young travellers and families.

Social media networks are playing an increasingly important role in the tourism sector. The Internet has changed consumer behaviour in many ways, both in terms of the way people buy their travel products, the destinations they choose, the amount of time they have to travel, and the amount of money they spend.

People are eager to share experiences via social media, making it the equivalent of word-of-mouth marketing, the most powerful means of personalised publicity for any destination.

Participants can check out full details of the contest, including eligibility, rules, regulations, procedures and prizes here: www.tourismthailand.org/discoverthainess (TAT)


Anantara Chiang Mai Presents Exclusive Michelin Chef Events

Famed Belgian chef Roger van Damme will be conducting cooking classes at the Anantara Chiang Mai in April.

Anantara Chiang Mai Resort & Spa is proud to announce three highly exclusive Michelin Chef culinary events on 9th, 10th and 11th April 2015, hosted by one of the world’s greatest patissiers - Michelin Star Chef Roger van Damme from Belgium.

Award winning chef, TV celebrity and author Roger van Damme is the owner and chef of the Michelin Star Het Gebaar restaurant in Antwerp. An innovative patissier, this godfather of molecular pastry is revered for his complex, intense and unforgettable desserts, and now guests of Anantara Chiang Mai Resort & Spa can enjoy unique opportunities to savour and recreate his masterpieces.

Offering culinary buffs the chance to learn Michelin Star trends, molecular techniques and secret master chef tips, on 9th April 2015 Chef Roger van Damme will be hosting a Molecular Dessert Cooking Class starting from 2:00 pm. Culinary students will learn how to create his specialty Spongecake with dipping sauce, Pancakes with caramalised banana and Grilled watermelon with espuma of mint and lemongrass. Priced at THB 2,000++ per person including a glass of wine, this highly exclusive culinary class is available for only eight persons and advance reservation is recommended to avoid disappointment.

Following this specialty cooking class, Chef Roger van Damme will be impressing connoisseurs at two Michelin Chef dinner events. On 10th April 2015 from 7:30 pm guests can savour his renowned dishes in a decadent seven course Fine Dining Western Dinner, priced at THB 3,400++ per person.

The following evening on 11th April 2015 from 7:30 pm a six course Fine Dining Asian Dinner comprises signature creations by the resort’s talented Executive Chef Prabhash Prabhakaran and concludes with a surprise Michelin dessert by Chef Roger van Damme, priced at THB 3,000++ per person.

Dates available are: 9 April 2015 - Molecular Dessert Cooking Class (THB 2,000++), 10 April 2015 – A seven course Fine Dining Western Dinner (THB 3,400++), 11 April 2015 – A six course Fine Dining Asian Dinner (THB 3,000++) at the Anantara Chiang Mai Resort & Spa. For reservations and more information, please contact. Tel: 053 253 333 or email [email protected]


Dhara Dhevi Chiang Mai participating in the Thai Tiew Thai 2015 convention

The Dhara Dhevi will be taking part in the domestic tourism convention in Bangkok from March 5 – 8, 2015

The Dhara Dhevi Chiang Mai will be participating at the Thai Tiew Thai 2015 event taking place at Queen Sirikit National Convention Center (Booth C 363 at Plaza Zone) in Bangkok from 5 - 8 March 2015. On show will be a captivating array of tourism-related products and services including hotels and resorts, airlines, tour operators, spas and travel equipment offering special discounts.

Sure to be a popular draw with visitors to Thai Tiew Thai 2015 will be The Dhara Dhevi Chiang Mai and the accommodation, F&B and spa promotions the luxury resort will be offering vouchers on rooms, three nights stay in suites and villas, restaurant and tea shop vouchers, and spa vouchers for special prices at the event.


Airport Link extends after-hour service from Suvarnabhumi

Two more trains departing from Suvarnabhumi Airport have been added to the Airport Rail Link’s late night schedule as the system is seeing a continuous rise in passenger number.

On the occasion of the 5th anniversary of the opening of the Airport Rail Link, Mr Pakorn Tangjetsakao, Acting CEO of SRT Electrified Train Company Limited, the operator of the system, revealed that the daily service has been extended past midnight. The aim is to cater to a number of air passengers who land at Suvarnabhumi Airport during late hours.

The extra trains depart from the airport at 12:15 am and 12:30 am and travel non-stop to Phayathai Station at the cost of 45 baht.

The Airport Rail Link has been serving more customers in recent years. In 2013, an increase of 4.56 percent was recorded and the figure jumped to 9.29 percent in 2014. For this year, the growth in passenger number is targeted at 7 percent. (NNT)


Bangkok Airways takes delivery of new aircraft

Bangkok Airways Public Company Limited led by Mr. Pradit Theekakul, Executive Vice President – Administration and Board of Director has recently taken delivery of its latest ATR72-600 aircraft at Suvarnabhumi Airport. This 70-seater ATR72-600 aircraft is equipped with a new full-glass cockpit and features a high comfort layout with larger overhead compartments, offering extra comfort for passengers. This ATR72-600 will be servicing on routes such as Samui, Sukhothai, Trat Lampang, Luang Prabang, Yangon and Siem Reap. Currently, Bangkok Airways’ fleet consists of 29 aircrafts; 8 ATR72-500s, 2 ATR72-600s, 8 A320s, and 11 A319s. For more information, please visit website: www.bangkokair.com


TAT expects tourism revenue to reach 2.2 trillion baht this year

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is confident that revenues from the tourism sector will grow to THB2.2 trillion by the end of 2015 due to the political stability in the country, according to TAT governor Thawatchai Arunyik.

He however expressed concern over the weakening euro and urged Thai authorities to closely monitor the situation as it might have impacts on country's tourism growth this year.

Moreover, the TAT has signed Memorandums of Cooperation with four tourism-related agencies namely the Tourism Department, the National Statistical Office, the Bank of Thailand (BOT) and Kasikorn Research Center.

The MoUs will allow the TAT and the contracting partners to exchange information and discuss marketing trend for use in the drawing up of tourism promotion strategies. The information will help enhance Thailand’s competitiveness in the world’s tourism market.

Meanwhile, the director of the BOT Macroeconomics Office, Mr. Don Nakhonthap, believed that this year’s global economy would grow more than last year despite slower growth in the European and Chinese economies. Although the situation might affect capital transfers in the international market, it would not affect the Thai tourism industry.

He was optimistic that about 26.5 million tourists would travel to Thailand in 2015 but admitted the Thai economy would this year expand at a rate slower than the estimate of 4 percent (NNT)


Thailand tourism enjoyed strong growth in January

Steady increase expected in first quarter

Thailand expects to enjoy a steady increase in international visitor numbers and revenue in the first quarter of this year, following a strong growth in January and a host of favourable factors, including a high demand from the China market for the Chinese New Year holiday period and the tireless effort by the kingdom’s tourism stakeholders to attract more tourists.

In January 2015, Thailand welcomed a total of 2.65 million foreign tourists and generated about 120 billion Baht in revenue, representing a year-on-year increase of 15.9 per cent and 12.7 per cent, respectively.
H.E. Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul, Minister of Tourism and Sports said, “The strong performance in January can be attributed to the significant growth in tourist arrivals at international airports throughout the kingdom, with China being the largest market. We expect to continue to enjoy a steady increase in the first quarter, especially in February due to the high demand from the China market during this coming Lunar New Year.”

Thailand is home to the world’s largest Chinatown (in Yaowarat, Bangkok), which is also the location for the nation’s biggest Chinese New Year celebrations. But travellers are also invited to enjoy a rich and diverse cultural mix of festivities that take place at key destinations up and down the kingdom, including Phuket, Nakhon Ratchasima, Ratchaburi, Phetchaburi, Trang, Suphan Buri, Nakhon Sawan, Songkhla (Hat Yai), Ayutthaya, Chon Buri (Pattaya), and Chiang Mai.

To ensure a steady growth for Thailand’s tourism, the Thai government is working on a number of policies and strategies to attract international visitors to visit the kingdom and to encourage Thai people to take more trips within the country. They include the launch of the “2015 Discover Thainess” campaign, as a way to promote Thailand’s natural and cultural assets among Thais and foreigners as well as to pass on the Thai way of happiness to international visitors.

In addition, last week, the government announced Monday, 4 May, 2015, to be an extra holiday with the objective of promoting tourism as a long holiday, from 1-5 May, would encourage Thais to travel and would boost the economy.

H.E. Kobkarn said, “Thailand will also continue to enhance cooperation across the spectrum of tourism to promote intra-ASEAN tourism as well as position the region as a single tourist destination. And, along with all our ASEAN neighbours, we will continue to forge stronger collaborations with our global partners under the ASEAN plus China, Japan, Republic of Korea cooperation mechanism, or the ASEAN+3 Framework.”

In order to ensure a strong presence of Thai tourism in the global market, Thailand through the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) will continue to be presented at all major and important travel trade shows as well as organise regular road shows to update on the kingdom’s tourism offers to the main and potential markets. In January 2015, H.E. Kobkarn led Thai tourism delegations to attend the ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) in Myanmar and FITUR in Spain to invite travel partners, members of the media and travellers to “Discover Thainess” in Thailand. (TAT)


Bangkok Airways to celebrate Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day with Chef McDang

Bangkok Airways celebrates Valentine’s Day and Chinese New Year Festival by serving special in-flight dessert menus exclusively created by Chef McDang (M.L. Sirichalerm Svasti). These special dessert menus will be available on all flights (economy and business class) departing from Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi Airport) and Samui Airport on 14 February 2015 (Valentine’s Day) and 19 February 2015 (Chinese New Year Day). For more information and reservation please contact Call Center 1771, 24 hours (3 baht per minute for landline telephone).


Suvarnabhumi set to see 9% growth in passenger numbers in the 2nd quarter

Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport is preparing to cater to larger passenger traffic in the second quarter of Fiscal 2015, which is expected to grow by 9 per cent year on year. Suvarnabhumi Airport director Prapon Pattamakitsakul said that in the first quarter of fiscal 2015 (October-December 2014) the airport served 12,902,628 passengers.

The figure dropped by 0.57 per cent year-on-year. They comprised 10,873,158 passengers on international flights (up 1.04 per cent) and 2,029,470 domestic passengers (down 8.41 per cent).

In the same period, the airport served 75,511 flights, declining 4.26 per cent year-on-year, consisting of 59,245 international flights (down 6.18 per cent) and 16,266 domestic flights (up 3.41 per cent).

The airport handled 328,667 tonnes of cargo and parcels, up 1.01 per cent. They comprised 317,045 tons of international cargo, up 1.01 per cent, and 1,622 tons of domestic cargo, up 1.14 per cent.

In the second quarter of this fiscal year, the number of passengers using the airport is expected to rise 9 per cent to 150,000-160,000 passengers a day.

The airport management has prepared to cope by installing 16 more passport readers and electronic charts, opening the Transfer Baggage Terminal to serve transit passengers, and improving taxi services among others. (MCOT online news)



HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]]

TAT launches online One and Only contest to promote Discover Thainess campaign

Anantara Chiang Mai Presents Exclusive Michelin Chef Events

Dhara Dhevi Chiang Mai participating in the Thai Tiew Thai 2015 convention

Airport Link extends after-hour service from Suvarnabhumi

Bangkok Airways takes delivery of new aircraft

TAT expects tourism revenue to reach 2.2 trillion baht this year

Thailand tourism enjoyed strong growth in January

Bangkok Airways to celebrate Chinese New Year and Valentine’s Day with Chef McDang

Suvarnabhumi set to see 9% growth in passenger numbers in the 2nd quarter

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