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Global travelers rate Thailand as a top post-pandemic destination – Visa Research

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Visa, the world’s leader in digital payments, is advising Thai businesses to prepare for an influx of travellers as borders reopen, with Thailand being rated as the fourth most attractive travel destination in the world, according to Visa’s Global Travel Intentions Study (the “Study”).

Thailand remains one of the most desirable destinations behind only the United States, the United Kingdom and India. The top Thai cities global travellers are looking up online include Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, and Hua Hin.

Serene Gay, Visa Group Country Manager for Regional Southeast Asia said: “It’s encouraging to see Thailand remains one of the most desirable travel destinations in the world. As borders reopen and international travel gradually resumes, it’s important that travel-related businesses are ready to accommodate tourists and their new post-pandemic preferences, including the ability to make safe, contactless digital payments. This will be key in creating business momentum and allowing businesses to thrive in the future.”

According to the study, the top three motivations for global travellers intending to visit Thailand are leisure pursuits (30%), the chance to escape and relax (25%), and outdoor adventure (18%). This demonstrates visitors are looking for stress-free holidays that provide optimum opportunities to relax, get outdoors, and leave the worries of the pandemic behind.

The study revealed that when in Thailand, tourists are most likely to head for activities and attractions that have made Thailand famous. The top activity preferences are going for a famous Thai massage, eating Thai food at cafes and restaurants, spending time at their resort, and embracing Thai culture, such as visiting a Buddhist temple.

Thailand’s tourism industry is showing signs of recovery, with increasing visitor numbers over the next three years expected to reach around 46.96 million by the end of 2024, according to the Pacific Asia Travel Association’s (PATA) study for Thailand. The ongoing relaxation of tourist entry requirements throughout the year should make it easier for tourists to return to Thailand.

“We hope these insights help tourism operators and all businesses in Thailand prepare for the return-to-travel phase. Visa continues to support tourism authorities, cities, and operators by providing digital payment solutions and valuable insights that help to unlock new opportunities. We hope our collaborative efforts will accelerate Thailand’s recovery and enable the country to recapture its full potential,” Serene concluded.

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