Thailand’s tourism-revival strategy is to target big spenders seeking privacy and social distancing in the COVID-19 era, rather than try to attract a large number of visitors.
The pandemic provides an opportunity to reset the sector, which had become reliant on Chinese groups and backpackers. Once the country’s borders are reopened and so-called travel bubbles are agreed upon, marketing efforts will be geared toward wealthier individuals who want holidays with minimal risks, Tourism Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said in an interview.
The government will initially allow a small number of arrivals, such as some business executives and medical tourists. It is also working with the travel industry to identify and invite individuals in target demographics, which will probably include previous visitors to luxury resorts in the islands of Phuket, Samui, Phangan and Phi Phi, the minister said. Phuket is "a prototype” because it has all the needed facilities.