Thai tour operators, concerned that political instability could affect the tourism industry, hope to form a government soon to appease international investors and tourists.
Marisa Sukosol Nunbhakdi, president of the Thai Hotels Association (THA), said ongoing problems with forming a government have raised concerns among tourists about safety and convenience. She stressed that some countries may be particularly sensitive to political turmoil and will resume travel once the situation stabilizes.
The national hotel occupancy rate was 46% in June. Occupancy should improve in July and August due to the summer holidays, the THA chairman said. She believes that while political protests are unlikely to affect current trends, the emergence of a new government will boost confidence and drive subdued demand.
Meanwhile, Adith Chairattananon, honorary secretary-general of the Association of Thai Travel Agents (ATTA), said most foreign tourists are aware of the current situation as political activity is normal in many countries. He reported that Atta had not canceled any orders due to political instability, but stressed that a government should be formed quickly to help businesses improve their operations and attract more inbound demand. Tourist-related crimes such as kidnapping and fraud do more damage to Thailand’s image than political rallies, he added. (NNT)