Kasikorn Bank predicts timeframe for Thai tourism recovery

12 Feb 2021

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With the gravity of Thailand 's lucrative tourism industry beginning to sink, the Kasikorn Bank Research Centre published a report with strong predictions.

Thailand's tourism and leisure sectors will be faced by deficits of 1.69 trillion in 2020. The report also provides for strict 'new normal' procedures, because government measures will monitor the entry and exit of foreign tourists and, in fact, all foreigners in order to prevent further Covid-19 outbreaks.

As the amount of new cases every day continues to be limited in single digits, it was apparent that Thailand will be a zero risk destination. It has not yet been announced exactly how this could be achieved and the list of restrictions imposed. But it is unlikely that immigration doors will soon be opened.

Kasikorn Research Center expects a tough period in the future for the country's main tourism sector, adding up to 18 percent of Thailand 's GDP, with the effect of Covid-19 on travel demand and the low buying power of potential visitors.

"Recovery will definitely not begin again in 2021. It will therefore be a difficult time for businesses in the tourism sector chain.

"Upon the discovery of a vaccine, tourism and hospitality operators will need to adapt their services and content to ensure safe distancing and comply with stringent health measures."

The paper examines a number of other key points ...

• Health regulations dictate the experience of travel

• Contact points must be hidden as much as necessary

• Safe distancing at popular tourist sites as well as during hotel trips or transfers to or from airports must be practiced.

Tour operators are faced with the challenge of ensuring safe bus transport across Thailand to ensure social distance required for all transfers. This will increase the cost of transfers and tours and require more buses to transfer groups of tourists.

With tour groups touring lakes or beaches, flower gardens and museums must be handled closely to avoid more outbreaks of Covid 19.

Also on planes, in order to enforce socially remote parking, the capacity to reduce passenger load would prohibit airlines from working profitably unless the costs of air fares escalate significantly.

If the risk-free paradigm of Thailand is to be applied successfully, the whole tourist supply chain must be drastically changed. The research recommends that hotels be required to engage in qualification schemes.

Tourist-fed economies such as Pattaya, Phuket and Koh Samui will be hit hardest with a long recovery period beyond the end of next year.

Source Thaiger