The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), marking its golden jubilee this year, and the State Railway of Thailand (SRT) have joined hands to promote tourism through rail travel.
For starters, the SRT has added new trains from Bangkok on weekends on short-haul Prachuap Khiri Khan-Chumphon, Nakhon Sawan-Phitsanulok-Sukhothai and Nakhon Pathom-Kanchanaburi routes which, if popular, would be extended to other destinations.
The cars of these trains have been given a major makeover and refurbishing to enhance appeal and level of comfort which, according to Governor Yutthana Thapcharoen, is going to cost the SRT some 7 million baht.
Comfortable cushions replace hard wooden seats while their arrangement is kind of flexible with room for adjustability allowing passengers to sit facing each other or turn sideways facing the window, and the trains are bolstered by amenities such as karaoke and meeting facilities and a bar.
TAT Governor Surapol Svetaseni said the private sector has responded favourably and added that his agency, which is offering special travel packages to destinations mentioned above, has spent a matching amount _ 7 million baht _ as part of its contribution to the scheme to make sure it is popular with the public.