In 2022, Thailand saw a significant increase in foreign visitors, with a total of 11.15 million people traveling to the kingdom. This was a significant jump from the previous year, when just 428,000 visitors were recorded due to pandemic-related travel restrictions.
According to data from the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the figure exceeded the government’s expectations and marks a strong recovery for Thailand’s vital tourism industry, which had been heavily impacted by strict entry and quarantine policies during the pandemic. There were 2.24 million foreign tourists in December alone, compared to 230,497 in the same month the year before.
Before the pandemic, Thailand saw a record high of nearly 40 million foreign tourists in 2019. The top three source markets for tourists last year were Malaysia, India, and Singapore.
Thailand is aiming to attract 25 million international visitors this year, with a focus on attracting at least five million visitors from China. To support this goal, the government has approved a budget of 3.95 billion baht (120.72 million US dollars) to boost domestic travel and international tourism in secondary cities.
The reopening of China is expected to further boost Thailand’s vital tourism sector, which before the pandemic accounted for about 12% of the gross domestic product in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy.