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The Songkran festival accounts for 90% of hotel booking rates in Thailand’s tourist zones

Photo courtesy of Event Pop

National – Tienprasit Chaiyapatanan, president of the Thai Hotels Association (THA), informed the public yesterday, April 20, that the Songkran festivalwhich took place from April 13 to 15, witnessed a gratifying 90% hotel booking rate in the main tourist zones. This increase in bookings reflects the popularity of the traditional Thai water festival among both local and international visitors.

However, an extension of the Songkran festival dates to April 21 did not seem to resonate well with tourists and had no significant impact on booking rates. The main reason for this, Tienprasit explained, was that most tourists preferred to book their stay during the three main days of water play.

Adding to the confusion, many international tourists were unaware of the Songkran celebrations taking place in other provinces or specific areas, such as Wan Lai in Pattaya on April 19.

Despite this, Pattaya’s Wan Lai Festival was hugely successful, especially among domestic tourists. Early estimates from Pattaya city officials suggest hundreds of thousands of Thais attended the event.

Tienprasit noted that a drop in accommodation bookings was expected after the festival. He stated: “Once the festival is over, accommodation booking rates will drop and gradually increase in some provinces and at tourist attractions in the coming months.”

However, the ongoing conflict in the Middle East could impact the number of tourists from that region. Tienprasit stated that due to the current circumstances, Middle Eastern groups are less likely to travel abroad.

As Thailand enters the low season starting in May, Tienprasit stressed the importance of the Thai government’s domestic travel measures in encouraging stable tourism. Nevertheless, he pointed out that certain considerations, such as the high cost of domestic air tickets and this year’s intense heat, could deter tourists.

“Many tourists choose to travel elsewhere, or are less likely to travel at all,” Tienprasit noted.

Despite these challenges, the overall tourism atmosphere remained subdued, with most tourists booking their accommodation in advance. Tienprasit also pointed out the potential for some Middle Eastern groups to choose Thailand as a place to wait out the ongoing conflict, similar to tourists from Russia and Ukraine, The Pattaya News reported.

“Many tourists complimented Thailand as a safe, peaceful country to travel and live in,” Tienprasit concluded.

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