“After three months of implementation, the measure has proved ineffective in stimulating domestic travel or meeting tourist demand, as very few packages have been sold,” said Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn
The Ministry of Tourism and Sports will reduce the budget for the “Tour Teaw Thai” tour group subsidy scheme due to low tourism demand, while reducing the number of planned tour groups from 1 million to 200,000.
As of Jan. 17, just 27,277 tour packages have been sold, and 1,972 shows are available on the program’s website. Since registration opened for Tour Teaw Thai on October 8 last year, some 18,650 tourists have taken part in the programme.
The program has generated 213 million baht of spending, of which 82.4 million baht came from government subsidies and the rest from travelers.
Mr Phiphat said local tourists often traveled domestically independently with family and friends, rather than using tour groups, especially during the pandemic, as travelling with foreigners could lead to health problems.
However, the department wants to keep the program, which will be extended from January 31 to April 30 if the existing 200,000 packages are used up.
Thanapol Cheewarattanaporn, president of the domestic association, said tour operators wanted the budget to stay the same, but wanted to simplify regulations such as the scanning process during travel and the approval process for each package on the website, which takes at least 21 days. travel.
Due to different funding sources, Mr Phiphat said the remaining budget of the government’s 1 trillion baht loan could not be used for the hotel and airline subsidy program We Travel Together, which was funded by the second 500 billion baht emergency loan decree.
He said Tour Teaw Thai is the only measure that provides openings for tourism drivers outside of hospices, while there will be no new tourism encouragement to supportthe assiduity after April, which is the launch of the off-season.
Mr. Thanapol added that the government should promote the Teaw Thai Tour to be more honored by the Thai people and encourage them to join.