Japan is the No.1 tourist destination among Thais

A new study reveals that the top five tourist destinations among Thai tourists include Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Singapore, and the United Kingdom.

The study by Visa surveyed 2,000 Thai people about their most desirable holiday destinations. The top three deciding factors when choosing where to go include travel expenses (65%), weather (49%), and desire to visit new places (48%).

“Good weather” to a budding Western tourist might mean a hot, tropical paradise e.g., Thailand. However, Thais are sick of the heat and are often in search of a cooler climate to explore.

Despite the fanatical and fervent use of face masks in Thailand, the survey showed that Thai tourists are gaining post-pandemic travel confidence. A third (35%) of respondents were concerned about the destination’s Covid-19-related entry restrictions and policies and only 23% were concerned about the spread of Covid while planning their trip.

The top three reasons for travelling abroad include exploring new places (61%), spending quality time with family and friends (42%) and revisiting favourite places (36%).

Thais expected to spend around 45,000 baht on a leisure trip and 40,000 on a business trip.

But why do Thais love Japan so much? Some attribute Thais’ love of all things Japanese down to gratitude since Japan waived visa requirements for Thai visitors in 2013.

Others say its food, Japan’s cuisine is loved all over the world and is an absolute favourite among Thais.

Or is it the weather? Japan’s snowy winters and cherry blossom springs offer experiences totally off-limits in Thailand.

Or could it be culture? Alongside a rich and interesting history, Japan’s popular culture – including music and anime – is a hit among Thai youths. With Japan’s magical Studio Ghibli theme Park opening last month, it’s no wonder Thais are lining up to visit the East Asian island nation.

Geography may also play a part. A flight from Bangkok to Tokyo takes a pleasant five hours and 35 minutes. It’s far enough away to feel like a real getaway but not quite a long-haul flight to Europe.

Visa found that the majority of Thais intended on paying with cards (69%), followed by cash (61%) and mobile contactless payments and digital wallets (57%).

Paying digitally is beneficial because it is secure (60%), convenient (56%) and it makes it easier to track spending (49%).

World News


Leah is a translator and news writer for the Thaiger. Leah studied East Asian Religions and Thai Studies at the University of Leeds and Chiang Mai University. Leah covers crime, politics, environment, human rights, entertainment, travel and culture in Thailand and southeast Asia.

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