The minister of tourism and sports, Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, predicted last week that if the Thailand Pass was withdrawn, more Malaysian tourists than Indian tourists would visit the “Land of Smiles.” The TTAA visited Malaysia this week together with about 100 outside tour companies. According to TTAA President Charoen Wangananont, the vast number of Malaysian visitors who have recently visited Thailand is evidence that Malaysia is a big market for two-way tourism with Thailand. He asserted that tour operators showed a high level of interest in presenting new packages to Malaysia after considering potential routes in Genting Highlands and Melaka during this trip. Thai tourists may travel to the historic state of Melaka, according to Malaysia’s Minister of Tourism, Arts, and Culture. Melaka has been listed as a World Heritage Site. This information comes after Thai tourism officials said last month that Malaysia would replace India as Thailand’s top tourist destination. In the first five months of the year, 78,523 Malaysian tourists traveled to Thailand, according to the Thailand Tourism Authority. Instead of tourists, the majority of these travelers were day traders. However, Minister Phiphat emphasized that the weakening of the Thai baht against the US dollar, the relatively low cost of living in Thailand, and the affordable hotel rates are things that drive tourists from other countries to the country. The most popular tourist attractions for Thais in Malaysia can instead be historical sites, entertainment, and theme parks. Thai travel agencies are encouraging more Thais to visit Malaysia. According to the president of the Thai Travel Agents Association, young people were increasingly coming to Malaysia for adventure before the Covid-19 outbreak. According to Charoen, buying in Malaysia has less appeal for Thai consumers because the costs are similar to those in Thailand.

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