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Thai Tourism chases the pink dollar as one of its “new shades”

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Thai Tourism chases the pink dollar as one of its “new shades” | The Thaiger
by Phatarawadee Phataranawik and The ThaigerWhile Thailand is waiting for a Life Partnership Bill to become law, and maybe a move towards full same-sex marriage down the track, advocates say they are encouraged by the country’s efforts in attracting LGBT tourists.

The recent approval of the Life Partnership Bill by the Thai cabinet was a significant step – the first such move for an Asian country – but it still must be passed by the NLA with elections and coronations likely to impede any progress in coming months.

But none of the protracted paperwork is stopping Thailand from chasing the pink dollar and marketing tourism products to LGBT travellers.

With a social climate widely seen as tolerant towards non-heterosexual orientations, Thailand has been called a haven for the gay and transgender lifestyle. The authorities are increasingly seeking to capitalise on that global reputation by encouraging more visits by foreign LGBT tourists, as well as the rights activists and artists who support the community.

Both the public and private sectors are preparing to host events in 2019 that will appeal to that social segment.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) runs marketing campaigns aimed at LGBT tourism and, among many other plans, the Hong Kong-based Sunpride Foundation will next November be bringing Asia’s largest LGBT art exhibition to Bangkok.

“LGBTQ are seen as a high-potential market with an above-average level of disposable income,” TAT deputy governor Srisuda Wanapinyosak told The Nation Weekend.

“In tourism terms, they tend to travel more frequently than the demographic average.”

In a recent report, LGBT Capital estimated the global LGBT population at 496 million, with 4.5 million LGBT people living in Thailand. Global purchasing power was calculated at US$3.6 trillion and spending on tourism at $5.3 billion.

Thai Tourism chases the pink dollar as one of its

Srisuda said the TAT had begun targeting this segment five years ago, but the market remained niche and hasn’t yet reached its full potential. With the Cabinet’s endorsement of the Life Partnership Bill, though – however troubled its future might be – the marketing is growing more aggressive both domestically and globally.

“The key to tapping into the LGBTQ market is to understand the diversity of preferences and respond accordingly,” she said. “It’s also important to welcome LGBT people genuinely and not be superficially ‘LGBT-friendly’.”

There are three main components to the TAT drive – events spanning entertainment and lifestyles like the Songkran festival and the Wonderfruit and White Party gatherings; high quality in the destinations, hospitality and cuisine on offer; and legal support from the government.

The TAT hosted an LGBTQ symposium in Bangkok in September that drew travel agents from 50 countries.

This month Srisuda will lead a road show in Spain. About 20 Thai tour operators will join her at Fitur, an international tourism-trade fair being held in Madrid.

“Fitur is one of biggest tourism fairs in southern Europe and features a Gay Pavilion,” she said. “Thailand will have a presence as usual, but this year for the first time we’ll also have a booth in the Gay Pavilion.”

Spain, of course, has already had a good look at Thailand. Spaniard Angela Ponce Camacho was in Bangkok in December as the first transgender contestant ever entered in the Miss Universe pageant. She used her time well, raising awareness about gender and LGBT issues as well as boosting Thai tourism on Instagram.

You can read the rest of this article in The Nation Weekend HERE.



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Thailand

PM Prayut kicks the election can down the road

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PM Prayut kicks the election can down the road | The Thaiger

PHOTO: The Nation

February 24? No.

March? April? Maybe May?

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has reaffirmed today that election will definitely be held by May 9 but gave no indication when exactly it will take place. It’s the first time he’s ever uttered an actual date.

He says that under the new Thai Constitution, May 9 is the final date election can be held but that his government needs to start making preparations for the Royal Coronation. Under the Constitution, a general election must be held within 150 days after the law on MPs election was promulgated. That was December 9 last year.

He also made a plea to the Thai voters not to “get bored” with him saying his administration will have to be around for a little while longer.

The PM, speaking at a National Teacher’s Day function, said the country was advancing toward full democracy with the election to be held definitely by May 9.

The explained that the tentative date of February 24 was no longer legally possible given the fact that the Royal decree for the poll failed to be announced last week as widely expected.

Meanwhile the Army Commander-in-Chief Gen Apirat Kongsompong yesterday warned the activists
“not to cross the line” in their plans for a protest this Friday. They’re demanding that the election must be held before March 10.

PM Prayut also pleaded asked the public for help to “maintain peace and order” during the lead-up and the coronation.  He said the election and the coronation ceremony are two separate issues and , therefore, should not be mixed together.

SOURCE: Thai PBS

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Thai Life

The internet booms and print languishes in 2019 advertising spend

The Thaiger

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The internet booms and print languishes in 2019 advertising spend | The Thaiger

Thailand’s Digital advertising market spend is poised to reach 124 billion baht in 2019. That’s a growth of nearly 5%. But newspapers, magazines, Cable TV and radio are on the nose as marketers stick with terrestrial TV and ramp up their digital portfolios.

“Digital media is expected to grow 20% and is will nearly equal the value of TV advertising within 3 years,” says Pathamawan Sathaporn, managing director of Mindshare, a global marketing and media network.

Compared to the past year, advertising spend in cable TV and newspapers will be down nearly 15% and magazines a whopping 24%. At the same time Digital TV advertising is expected to increase 14% and internet advertising just over 20%.

According to Mindshare, the top 10 advertising sectors remain consistent… media and marketing, motor vehicles, non-alcoholic drinks, government, skincare and preparation, communications, leisure, dairy products, pharmaceuticals, and retail.

Mindshare say there are key trends for this year, all of them digital.

“Facebook Live and other streaming content providers will become a new method for marketers. Social networks are going to reach critical mass, outrunning traditional media with Google, Facebook, YouTube, and Line altogether making up one-third of digital advertising.”

In 2018, ad spending in Thailand was 118.4 billion baht, up 5.7% from 2017.

The internet booms and print languishes in 2019 advertising spend | News by The Thaiger

Pathamawan Sathaporn, managing director of Mindshare

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Bangkok

Air quality for Thailand – January 16

The Thaiger

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Air quality for Thailand – January 16 | The Thaiger

Northern Thailand

Air quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The Thaiger

Air quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The Thaiger

Central Thailand

Air quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The ThaigerAir quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The Thaiger

Southern Thailand

Air quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The Thaiger

Air quality for Thailand - January 16 | News by The Thaiger

 

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