Thailand tops BBC poll for Southeast Asia travel

FILE PHOTO: Thailand was ranked the most desirable destination of Southeast Asia in a BBC poll.

A recent BBC poll saw Thailand on the top of the list of most desired destinations to travel to in Southeast Asia. BBC News conducted a poll of people planning a trip from Europe and North America to Southeast Asia in July. Thailand topped the list with 57.4% of people responding that they would be likely to visit the kingdom.

The poll was conducted by surveying 1,414 people who have plans to travel to Southeast Asia and are members of BBC Global Minds. That online community is comprised of about 19,000 people who closely follow international news. Polling shows that their travel intentions were not distant dreams; 80% of Europeans surveyed planned to head to the region within the next 6 months.

Results indicated that people chose Thailand more than any other country in Southeast Asia that’s their destination of choice to travel to. The BBC poll also delved into people’s travel experience, travel lanes, and travel styles. They found that people were planning to stay in Thailand for at least a week or two.

Travellers to Southeast Asia also tend to be more experienced the novice holidaymakers. They’re looking for things more exotic and exciting. And as such, they prefer to plan their own independent travel rather than doing a pre-planned tour group or package.

A recent brainstorm by the Pheu Thai Party may also be on to something, as they urged expanding beyond the same “sun, sand, sea” marketing plan for tourism. In the BBC poll, 91% of people said they’re looking for a unique heritage and culture in their travel. Additionally, 72% said sustainability is important and they want to be sure their trip has a minimal impact on the environment of their destination country.

The vice president for advertising sales at BBC News commented on the tourism revival in Southeast Asia and the world after Covid-19, as well as the need to analyse travel trends.

“Travel has been in a state of flux since the pandemic and we are seeing a wonderful comeback throughout Southeast Asia currently for travellers and the travel industry as a whole. It is fantastic to see that travellers from across the world are planning on coming to Southeast Asia and it is really important to understand why their travel decisions are being made.”

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Neill Fronde

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.

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