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Chinese tourists may cause growing problems in Thailand’s tourism economy

People who work in tourism and the entertainment industry are ecstatic about China’s statement that it will reopen and allow outward travel. However, some are concerned about the possible issues that could arise as a result of a large number of Chinese tourists visiting their country. Some people are concerned about an overwhelming influx of Chinese tourists visiting popular destinations in Thailand. Some people are concerned that the enormous rush of tourists into Thailand could put an undue strain on the country’s healthcare infrastructure, particularly in light of the widespread Covid-19 outbreak that is presently occurring in China.

On Monday, China made the announcement that beginning on January 8, it will lift its rigorous quarantine of those traveling to and living on the mainland and will reopen its borders. The decision is excellent news for Thailand, which is continuing to thrive as a result of the international easing of restrictions on covids. Prior to the pandemic, China was Thailand and many other countries in the region’s most important source of international tourists. The Tourism Authority of Thailand has stated that they intend to increase their target estimates for international tourists arriving in Thailand in 2023 from 20 million to over 25 million in the event that the Chinese people unquestionably return to the travel patterns they maintained before the pandemic. They projected that as many as 500,000 individuals will go to Thailand over the course of the Chinese New Year break. In addition, they anticipate that between three and five million Chinese tourists will visit the country during the course of the year. In what the TAT is calling a “recalibration of preparedness and policy,” they are meeting with representatives from the private sector. After three years in which tourism has been significantly curtailed and there have been no tourists from China, the industry is likely to have developed some rust. There has been a significant increase in the number of cases of Covid infection that have been reported in China recently. After it was claimed that almost one million individuals a day contract Covid, the government decided to stop making public announcements regarding the number of infections. The governor of the TAT, Yuttasak Supasorn, has given his word that he will discuss this matter with the Ministry of Public Health in order to find a solution and ensure that the Thai healthcare system is prepared.

“The most essential factor is not how many Chinese will return to visit Thailand again; rather, the most important factor is helping the country prevent another Covid wave and keeping Thais safe.” In addition to Covid, the mechanics of travel may not be ready for a significant increase in the number of Chinese tourists that visit. In order to satisfy the demand, there is an immediate need to increase the capacity of flights. Hotels in some markets are getting dangerously close to reaching their maximum occupancy, but the prospect of an increase in the number of Chinese visitors entering the country could help alleviate this problem. This would make it possible for closed properties to finally have the financial stability to reopen and provide a revenue guarantee to support ongoing operations and the hiring of additional staff. But staffing levels themselves might be a problem, given that the hospitality industry is still struggling with a lack of workers. As a result of the pandemic, the tourism industry was the first to go down, and it was also the last to restart. As a result, many people simply switched industries and found other employment. In order for hotel businesses to get back on their feet, according to the president of the Thai Hotels Association, hotel owners need to be prepared to pay higher wages and overall operating costs. According to the data, there will likely be a large number of Chinese tourists arriving soon. Within the first 15 minutes after the reopening announcement, the number of flight searches conducted on the online travel portal Qunar increased by a factor of seven. Thailand was the most sought-after holiday destination, despite the fact that Japan and South Korea were popular and ranked second and third, respectively, on the list of most searched travel spots. Tongcheng Travel, which has locations in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangzhou, was inundated with requests from customers and recorded a rise of 850% in inquiries about international travel.

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