Lights, camera, blog. TAT reaches out to online millennials.

PHOTO: Where in the World is Nina?

With pressure on tourism authorities to come up with new ways to lure tourists to the Land Of Smiles and rebrand the tired ‘Amazing Thailand’ promotion, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) have come up with the ‘Thailand Village Academy’.

Stepping firmly into the world of online bloggers and social media, the TAT are hoping to reach out to a younger market, specifically the 18-35 demographic.

44 bloggers from 17 countries were shortlisted for a chance to promote Thailand as a destination to similar millennials around the world. The bloggers were selected from nearly 1,500 contestants in 86 countries.

The bloggers are shooting their material for six days up to July 29. The winners are from Australia, Nepal, Bhutan, Malaysia, India, Indonesia, Italy, Israel, Nigeria, The Philippines, Peru, Russia, Singapore, Tunisia, UK and Ukraine. Cash and other prizes valued around US$10,000 (308,905 baht) are being offered to winners.

Apart from the TAT, the Cultural Promotion Department, Thai Airways and Thai Smile are involved in making the promotion happen. Organisers say the travel blogs shot at 22 villages across Thailand will not only reach out more efficiently to younger tourist customers, it will also benefit the villages chosen to take part in the project. Thai and Thai Smile flew the contestants to their destinations for the project.

The locations include Ban Phu Homestay in Mukdahan, the Ban Lao Wiang Cultural Tourism Community in Uttaradit, Ban Tha Ma-O Community in Lampang, Thung Wa Community in Satun and the Sapphaya Old Police Station Market Community in Chai Nat.

The TAT says they will extend the promotion to other villages and communities in the future.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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