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Phuket’s Strategic Shift: Targeting Middle Eastern Tourism

by Dtonkhao on 13/05/2024
Phuket’s Strategic Shift: Targeting Middle Eastern Tourism

Phuket’s Strategic Shift: Targeting Middle Eastern Tourism Amid Seasonal Slump

Phuket’s tourism industry is undergoing a strategic shift, targeting affluent tourists from the Middle East to offset declines in visitors from traditional markets like Russia and Europe during certain periods.

Arabian Travel Market 2024 Highlights

The Arabian Travel Market 2024 event in Dubai saw remarkable success, drawing over 46,000 attendees from 160 countries, including 33,500 visitors. Phuket was a focal point for the Thai delegation led by Thapanee Kiatpaiboon, showcasing its appeal to Middle Eastern tourists.

Phuket’s Showcase and Collaboration

Phuket’s hospitality businesses, including 30+ participants, presented their offerings at the Amazing Thailand Pavilion, emphasizing community tourism products. Collaborative efforts between the Phuket Tourist Association (PTA) and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) aimed to capture the interest of high-spending tourists from the Middle East.

Engagement and Success in Business Meetings

Business-to-business meetings were fruitful as Phuket’s hospitality leaders engaged with tour operators from Asia and the Middle East, targeting niche groups such as luxury travelers, families, and honeymooners.

Impact of Timing and Seasonal Tourism

The timing of the Arabian Travel Market 2024, post-Thailand’s high season, coincided with shifts in international carriers’ schedules, affecting arrivals from winter markets. This highlighted Thailand’s seasonal tourism patterns, particularly the absence of a Songkran surge.

Arrivals and Market Dynamics

Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism and Sports (MoTS) reported international arrivals of 28.1 million in 2023, with the Middle East contributing 600,499 visitors. Notably, Saudi Arabia led Middle Eastern arrivals, followed by the United Arab Emirates, Oman, and Kuwait, positioning Phuket strategically in the region’s tourism landscape.

More information

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