Hotel platform predicts increasing demand for holidays in Thailand

PHOTO: Flickr / Marike de Meij

With just days to go before Phuket re-opens, and talks underway to re-open the country as a whole in October, one of the world’s largest hotel platforms says the data shows things are looking up for Thailand. Bradley Haines from SiteMinder says Thai hotel operators should feel some encouragement from current booking trends around the world.

According to Haines, the rollout of vaccines and the loosening of restrictions in many countries has led to the highest number of global hotel bookings since the pandemic began. TTR Weekly reports that in recent days, bookings have jumped to over 65% of 2019 figures, recording a 465-day high. Haines believes watching developments in Europe gives a good indication of what lies in store for Thailand’s hotel industry.

“A particularly interesting case study for Thailand, however, is the recovery of some European markets. The speed at which booking momentum has been able to evolve in certain countries has been fascinating to watch, and Spain comes to mind as a prime example. At the beginning of April, Spanish booking momentum was at only around 38% of 2019 levels, just 13% above where Thailand is today. However, a wave of both domestic and now international bookings (Spain opened its borders to fully vaccinated travellers on 7 June without the need to quarantine), has ensured that in just a matter of weeks, booking volumes to Spanish hotels are currently at 97% of 2019 levels, a significant shift.”

Haines points out that, according to recent Skyscanner data, Bangkok sits at number 11 in the world’s most searched locations during the first 4 months of this year. Data on Agoda hotel searches shows that Thailand is still very much a popular destination with Chinese, Singaporean, Taiwanese, Australian, South Korean, and Japanese tourists. All of this makes Haines confident it’s only a matter of time until things start to look up for Thailand’s hotel operators.

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“I would encourage all Thai hoteliers to step back, take in a wider perspective by looking at global data flows, and stay in tune with what’s happening in the broader hotel industry, as international guests may be returning to Thailand before we know it.”

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Maya Taylor

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

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