Connect with us


Songkran, Thailand’s wettest holiday, dampened by Covid-19



Merit-making is the most popular activity planned for this year's Songkran Festival / Photo by HippoPx

Holiday spending during Songkran, the one time when “raining on one’s parade” is a plus, is projected to be the lowest in 9 years at about 113 billion baht, down 17% from 2019 with people still facing concerns over the Covid-19 pandemic. The tourism industry has been hoping for a big boost from the celebration, but it is seeming less likely. A poll by the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce of 1,256 people in the last week of March predicts a less enthusiastic Songkran festival again this year, according to the UTCC president.

“The lower spending means the Songkran festival will not be as vibrant as usual, though it’s unlikely to be gloomy either,” 

Covid-19 is to blame for the dampening of the spirit of the usually soaking-wet Songkran holiday, with many people feeling nervous about the health of their bodies and bank accounts. Fears after the massive outbreak in Samut Sakhon and around Bangkok, in Bang Khae and Pathum Thani, may keep Songkran celebrations local and in-home, driving down holiday spending significantly. The damage to the Thai economy without signs of any immediate relief also has people watching their budgets more closely.

The UTCC poll found that more frugal activities were among the most popular during a Covid-19 Songkran, especially since the government is currently banning water fights and splashing again this year and strictly regulating holiday events to prevent a coronavirus outbreak. Making merit tops the list of activities, followed by eating and celebrating at home. The third most popular is “rod nam dam hua,” a traditional ceremony where the younger generation pours jasmine water on the hands of elders and parents to receive blessings and to wish the elders good health.

Only about 22% of those polled said they will increase their spending this year, while 43% say they will spend about the same and nearly 35% will tighten their budget and reduce expenses this Songkran due to Covid-19. 26% of respondents plan on staying home, while 10% will travel to their home province. 15% have other inter-province travel plans and 39% plan to stay within their current province. Chon Buri, Prachuap Khiri Khan and Trat are among the most popular holiday destinations. 10% have not made any plans yet.

Those who are planning to do any tourist travel are not likely to spend big either. 44% are planning only a single-day trip, not a longer, less thrifty holiday. Travellers to tourist destinations are expected to spend an average of 5,180 baht.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10+ years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

Follow Thaiger by email:

World2 mins ago

Suicide bombing in Afghanistan hits students preparing for exam

Politics49 mins ago

BREAKING: Prayut reinstated as Prime Minister of Thailand

Technology53 mins ago

What role for Thailand in China’s great European EV invasion?

Sponsored7 hours ago

10 Best Seed Banks that Ship Cannabis Seeds Discreetly to You (Free US Shipping)

Cambodia60 mins ago

Cambodian delegation in UK to seach for stolen treasures

Thailand1 hour ago

20 baht notes printed with errors, says Bank of Thailand

Crime2 hours ago

Loan shark bombs debtor’s house in southern Thailand

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand2 hours ago

Thai researchers develop flood-resistant rice strain

Press Room3 hours ago

Southeast Asia’s hospitality leaders step into the ring to fight for sustainability at PHIST 5

Crime3 hours ago

Horrified relatives attempt ID of disfigured suitcase victim

Travel3 hours ago

Things to do in Bangkok that cost next to nothing (2022)

Travel3 hours ago

5 best spa treatments in Bangkok to pamper yourself this September – October

Phuket3 hours ago

Phuket’s governor Narong braces for storm Noru

Politics4 hours ago

Royal defamation case dropped against Thai activist

Myanmar4 hours ago

OnlyFans star sentenced to six years in prison in Myanmar

Protests5 hours ago

Activists plan protests across Bangkok

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11