Thailand is fielding its usual strong presence at the ITB Berlin 2019, which is held from 6 to 10 March at Messe Berlin in the German capital. This year marks the 53rd staging of the world’s leading annual travel trade show and the 45th time the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is participating as an exhibitor.
The Thai Pavilion at the ITB Berlin 2019 comprises 88 exhibitors. Of these, 78 are hotels and resorts and the rest are tour operators and tourism-related agencies. Eighteen of the Thai exhibitors are exhibiting for the first time at the ITB Berlin.
TAT Governor Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn said: “The Thai Pavilion at the ITB Berlin 2019 has been designed in line with the concept of ‘Amazing Thailand: Open to the New Shades’ and an over-arching theme of ‘Responsible Tourism’.
“The focus is on products and services of emerging tourist destinations in Thailand that have the potential to meet the needs of European tourists.”
Ten provinces that TAT believes European tourists will find well worth exploring, and which can be conveniently accessed as add-ons to major destinations are Chiang Rai, Mae Hong Son, Sukhothai, Nan, Trat, Chanthaburi, Chumphon, Ranong, Trang and Nakhon Si Thammarat. Each offers interesting attractions, unique gastronomic delights and local ways of life for visitors to experience.
Thailand’s presence at the ITB Berlin 2019 is further boosted by the participation of the Sports Authority of Thailand and Arts of the Kingdom Museum as well as two local DMCs that promote tourism packages to emerging destinations. Friday Trip promotes Krabi, Phuket and Surat Thani with ‘CastAway Paradise in the Andaman’, and ‘The Wisdom of Surat Thani’s Tapi River’ and Thai LocalistA promotes community tourism trails in Mae Hong Son and Chiang Mai.
Also presenting at the Thai Pavilion are three travel tech start-ups, including two which were winners of the ‘TAT Start-up Entrepreneurs of the New Age’ competition; namely, TakeMeTour, Thailand’s largest online platform offering local tour packages from communities in both major and emerging destinations, and Golfdigg, the No. 1 online booking platform for golf packages in Thailand. Another presence is Socialgiver, an online booking platform that supports social projects across Thailand.
A new application called “TAGTHAI” has been pre-launched at the ITB Berlin 2019 ahead of its official launch set for April 2019. The app has been jointly developed by 30 private sector companies and 19 government agencies, including the Ministry of Tourism and Sports and TAT, under the “Digital Tourism Platform” project. TAGTHAI has been created to be a national tourism platform that links travel information as well as products and services of entrepreneurs throughout a value chain, so that tourists can conveniently access travel information.
TAT has prepared various activities to be held throughout the five-day travel trade show, including the 8th annual Thailand Mini Mart on 8 March, special table-top sales for 30 invited potential buyers from different European countries and 36 Thai sellers; daily cultural demonstrations at which ITB delegates can, for example, try their hand at making Lawa earrings and necklaces and Karen embroidered bags, and cultural performances on 9-10 March showcasing music and dance from the Northern Thailand and I-san (Northeast) regions and the rare manohra dance from the South. Also, on 9-10 March, the Sports Authority of Thailand will be showcasing modern and traditional forms of Muay Thai and offering basic lessons.
The Tourism Information Counter at the Thai Pavilion will offer ‘Open to the New Shades’ concept VDOs, e-brochures, and Touchscreen Interface technology on community tourism villages around Thailand, and booklets on destinations and activities tourists can enjoy when visiting the kingdom.
TAT is also joining the LGBT Travel Pavilion for a second consecutive year to promote Thailand to this high-spending group.
*Photo gallery: Thai Pavilion at ITB Berlin 2019