The number of European tourist arrivals in Thailand this year is expected to decline by 1.5 per cent year on year to around 6.66 million, according to the Kasikorn Research Centre.
The Thai government has noted that while European tourists decline they are getting significant increases in Chinese, Indian, Korean and Japanese tourists.
The projected spending of European tourists in Thailand is Bt468 billion, down 1 per cent year on year, due to tourists adjusting their holiday budgets in response to the baht strengthening against their home currencies.
According to the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, some 4.44 million European tourists visited in the first eight months of this year, a 1.9-per-cent drop. The decline was seen mainly in the markets of Russia, Germany, Sweden, and France.
This year’s high season is challenging for the sector as the country faced both a stronger baht and tougher competition as other destinations stepped up tourism marketing campaigns.
Officially, Thailand blames the drop on European tourist arrivals on external factors such as Brexit, trade wars, external politics and recessions in foreign countries. Not a single reason placing any blame on Thailand has been given.