This year, ITB 2014 marked the 49th anniversary since its inauguration in 1966. It also marked Thailand’s 40th year of participation. Over 110 Thai exhibitors and travel and tourism operators were participating. The team included senior executives of hotels, tour operators and travel-related agencies.
In line with the “Thainess” theme, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) also proudly presented a new global marketing and promotion tagline “Amazing Thailand. It begins with the people.” At the Thai Pavilion, all guests and visitors were welcomed with “Thainess” by extending the Thai greeting “Sawasdee” (meaning “well-being”).
TAT Governor Thawatchai Arunyik said, “Both the ‘Thainess’ theme as well as ‘It begins with the people’ tagline reflect our core values as a people and society, as well as the increasingly human-centric aspect of Amazing Thailand.
“It deepens the emotional value of visiting the country, a value that is linked to the people in their attitude, hospitality and spirit. Today’s travellers are choosing destinations and services that satisfy deeper need for participation, creativity, community, and idealism.”
TAT has organised a number of activities to ensure that Thailand maintains a high-profile presence at the trade show, which is attracting record participation due to the phenomenal growth in the global travel and tourism industry. As such, TAT has to ensure that it maintains the country’s competitive edge in the face of many emerging new destinations worldwide, and their strong marketing campaigns.
At the Thai pavilion, visitors enjoyed a Thai spa demonstration by RarinJinda Wellness Spa, a winner of the Thailand Tourism Awards and popular spa amongst local and foreign consumers.
Over 35,000 brochures promoting more than 50 types of travel opportunities in Thailand were distributed. Special focus was placed on promoting beach resorts; such as, Ko Samui, Ko Chang, Phuket, Pattaya, Khao Lak, Hua Hin; Natural and Cultural destinations like Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Ayutthaya and Kanchanaburi, and promoting special-interest activities; such as, diving and golf.
Other activities at the Thai pavilion include:
1) “Happy Hour Reception”, on 5 March, from 17.00-18.00 hrs.
2) “Thailand Green Excellence Awards Germany” on 6 March, at 15.00 hrs; HRH Princess Ubol Ratana presided over the ceremony to present the awards to travel agents and media in Germany who have promoted eco-friendly tourism to Thailand.
3) “Thailand Mini Mart @ Berlin”, on 7 March, from 09.30-16.30 hrs; TAT overseas offices in Europe have invited buyers from new and niche markets to arrange pre-appointments with sellers from Thailand.
Germany is Thailand’s third largest source market from Europe after Russia and the UK. In 2013, Thailand recorded 744,363 German visitors, up by 9% over 2012.
German visitors are very important because they have one of the longest average lengths of stay. For example, the average length of stay of visitors from Germany in 2012 was 18 days, as against 7.15 for India and 7.95 for China.
In 2012, Thailand recorded 682,419 visitors from Germany, with a daily expenditure per person of 3,617 Baht. This generated a total tourism income of 43.286 billion Baht, the 8th largest source of tourism income after China, Russia, Australia, Malaysia, the UK, Japan and the USA.