"Amazing value Thailand" starts to rebuild its tourism

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The Independent Online

Customers could soon get even more for their money when travelling to Thailand, as hotels, airlines and officials come together to try to kickstart the country's battered tourism industry.

Dusit, which owns 16 hotels in the country, launched its "Dusit Take 2" offer on June 2 to stimulate summer travel to its properties in Thailand - expected to be heavily affected by the recent violence in the Thai capital Bangkok.

Consumers booking with the chain offer the summer period will receive a second night at 50 percent or a second room at 50 percent, for all bookings made online between June 2 and August 31.

"This campaign will also ultimately help restore the confidence in Thailand's tourism and return it to be one of the world?s top holiday destinations with its beauty, warm hospitality, and value for money," said Dusit International's Simon Burgess.

Dusit is also to hold meetings with 300 partners in the Bangkok region to show appreciation for the work of their clients and business partners in getting the capital back on its feet.

Last week, budget airline AirAsia gave away 10,000 free seats from its international destinations to Bangkok for this summer.

However, travelers to the region could soon get even more value for money, under a plan from the Asia-Pacific travel association PATA which said that Thailand already offered "tremendous value".

On June 4, the group called for Thai hotels to examine the products they offer and to add value to room rates by including additional services such as free wifi and breakfast rather than slashing prices alone.

"Until tour operators have the confidence to send their clients to Thailand, and tourists/business travellers feel confident that they will enjoy an uninterrupted trip, price cutting alone will not bring back the numbers," said PATA CEO Greg Duffell.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand says that short term "tactical measures" such as website competitions, travel awards, lucky draws and special offers targeted at specific customer segments are all being planned, along with a renewed focus on social media.

Officials also believe that the silver bullet for reviving Thailand tourism could lie in attracting visitors to the provinces outside of Bangkok, with May arrivals to Phuket International Airport rising by 61 percent as passenger numbers to Bangkok's main Suvarnabhumi International Airport plummeted.

Hence, the Thailand Tourism Festival (TTF), which begins June 9 at the Impact Muang Thong Thani, will highlight the country's 72 provinces.