China returns to top five inbound destinations of Thailand: Agoda

By Hoang Phong   January 26, 2024 | 04:33 pm PT
China returns to top five inbound destinations of Thailand: Agoda
Tourists visit Wat Arun temple in Bangkok, Thailand, Jan. 18, 2023. Photo by Reuters
China ranked second in the list of Thailand’s top five inbound destinations for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday, marking its return for the first time since 2019.

Malaysia topped the list, according to Agoda's data based on bookings made between Jan. 1 and 15 for checking in on Feb. 9 or 10 and staying a minimum of two nights.

South Korea ranked third, followed by Singapore and Japan.

Enric Casals, associate vice president of Southeast Asia at Agoda, said: "The Lunar New Year period is a significant time for travel, and this year is no different. Since 2019, hotels and destinations have diversified the appeal of their markets with visa-free travel and other incentives.

"The travel industry will no doubt be looking forward to welcoming back more travelers from China this year."

Bangkok was the most favorite destination for international tourists, followed by Phuket, Hat Yai, Pattaya, and Chiang Mai.

Although officially celebrated on Feb. 10, the Lunar New Year holiday is extended to a long weekend in many Asian countries and week-long celebrations for China, Japan (Spring Holiday) and Vietnam (Tet).

The holiday also referred to as Chinese New Year, is traditionally one of the peak travel moments for tourists from mainland China.

Thailand and China will permanently waive visa requirements for each other's citizens from March.

Thailand expected to welcome 5 million Chinese arrivals last year but fell short of its target with only 3.51 million out of a total of 28 million arrivals.

This year it is targeting 8 million Chinese arrivals.

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