BANGKOK (Reuters) – The Russia-Ukraine crisis will have a negative impact on foreign tourist arrivals, Siripakorn Cheawsamoot, deputy governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) for marketing communications, said on Thursday (February 24th).
Beach chairs are placed on an empty beach in Phuket. File photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran / Bangkok Post
The Russian-Ukrainian dispute will certainly have an immediate effect on the tourism sector, Mr Siripakorn said, reports the Bangkok Post.
Following the launch of the government’s “Test & Go” program for fully vaccinated travelers in November, the number of foreign tourist arrivals was around 100,000, of which around 10% were from Russia, he said.
Mr Siripakorn said many Russian tourists were high-quality tourists with high purchasing power, and most traveled with their families. Ukraine also has high-quality tourists, but the number of arrivals is lower than Russia’s, he added.
In the wake of escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine, travelers may decide to cancel their trip to Thailand as many airlines have had to divert or cancel their flights, according to the TAT official.
“It is too early to assess the impact of the situation because the situation is beyond our control.
“The TAT can only closely monitor the situation and maintain consistent communication with the private sector at home and abroad,” Mr Siripakorn said.