The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is participating in the Tourism EXPO Japan 2022 (TEJ 2022) in partnership with a Thai delegation. It is being conducted in Tokyo from September 22nd to September 25th 2022 with the goal of rebuilding this vital tourism source market to Thailand.
The TEJ is the region’s largest tourism promotion event organized by the Japan Association of Travel Agents (JATA) and Japan Travel and Tourism Association (JTTA). In its 34th year, the TEJ 2022 is being held at the Tokyo Big Sight exhibition center and it will consist of 2 trade business negotiation and press days on September 22nd – September 23rd and 2 general public days on September 24th – September 25th. It is expected at least 200,000 people will attend the event.
“The Tourism EXPO Japan 2022 is a wonderful opportunity for TAT and the Thai tourism industry to reiterate our ongoing ‘Visit Thailand Year 2022-2023: Amazing New Chapters’ campaign.” stated TAT Governor, Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, “At the same time, our presence at this largest tourism promotion event in the region allows us to make significant ground in efforts to rebuild the important Japanese market with the chance to meet and update both the Japanese travel industry and the general public.”
Seven hotel operators and three travel companies are working together with TAT in the Thai delegation to TEJ 2022. The Thailand booth will have the theme ‘Thailand Green Tourism – Amazing New Chapters’. The members of this delegation will manage a total of 21 business appointments during the trade days. Additionally, they will also participate in a travel showcase and an international tourism forum.
The Thailand booth will also be holding Thai cultural performances throughout the show, while also promoting Thailand’s efforts towards maintaining sustainable tourism, and socially and eco-friendly tourism. Workshops on making bags using upcycled seine fishing nets and making paper using elephant feces from Elephant POOPOOPAPER Park in Chiang Mai will also be included.
On the evening of 21 September, TAT also organized the ‘Amazing Thailand New Chapters Reception’ in Tokyo to promote the “Visit Thailand Year 2022-2023: Amazing Thailand New Chapters” campaign. Reception attendees included H.E. Mr. Singtong Lapisatepun (Ambassador of Thailand to Japan), Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn (TAT Governor), and Mr. Ohata Takahiko (President of the Overseas Tour Operators Association), additional TAT executives, as well as public and private sectors, both from Japan and Thailand. The attendees were given an update on Thai tourism by members of the Thai delegation and were treated to Thai cultural performances, including a Khon masked dance drama.
The event was also used as an official stage to introduce the popular idol group from Japan, the Sato Triplets, as a ‘Thailand Tourism Ambassador in Japan’ – a project in line with the TAT’s strategy to leverage the kingdom’s 5F soft-power foundations of Food, Film, Fashion, Festival and Fight, to promote Thailand in key tourist source markets through the popularity of famous artists and celebrities from those markets.
Mr. Tanes Petsuwan, TAT Deputy Governor for International Marketing – Asia and South Pacific, said “For the Japanese market, TAT aims to focus on all market segments, including repeat tourists, Bleisure (business + leisure) visitors, golfers, lady worker groups, and elderly tourists, as well as new high potential market groups, such as those who love Thai dramas, especially the Boy Love and Oya-Rich groups.”
TAT is using five new strategies to help rebuild foreign tourism to Thailand from markets like Japan. This incorporates New Segment (to penetrate new markets), New Area Searching (for quality tourists in new potential areas), New Partner (with new tourism industry alliances), New Infrastructure (taking advantage of new transportation routes to distribute tourists), and New Way (presenting a new way of tourism that focuses on environmental protection).
The Japanese market is an important one for Thailand. In 2019, a total of 1,787,185 Japanese tourists visited the kingdom and generated income of 93,759 million Baht. With Thailand fully reopening to international tourism and Japan relaxing outbound travel requirements, TAT is aspiring to rejuvenate the Japanese market to 70% of the 2019 figure – or around 1.25 million arrivals – by 2023.
The resumption of Thai AirAsia’s 4 weekly flights on the Narita-Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok) route from June 5th 2022, 3 weekly flights on the Fukuoka-Don Mueang (Bangkok) route from August 2022, and the planned resumption of 4 weekly flights on the Chitose (Hokkaido)-Suvarnabhumi route, and 7 weekly flights on the Kansai-Suvarnabhumi route in October 2022 will help greatly in achieving this goal.