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HometravelMore Thais ready to travel

More Thais ready to travel

Roughly 88% of Thai travellers intend to travel at least the same amount as they did over the past year, including 53% who intend to travel more, according to a survey by SiteMinder, a global hotel commerce platform.

The number of Thais planning to travel only internationally has nearly doubled, from 26% last year to 49% this year.

The figures come from the Changing Traveller Report2023, which SiteMinder described as the world’s largest consumer research survey on accommodation.

Interviews with more than 10,000 travellers in Thailand and 11 other countries uncovered four key characteristics underpinning the travel plans and motivations that will influence the global accommodation industry over the coming year:

The enduring explorer: Committed to travelling, regardless of living costs;

The digital dependent: Reliant on new technologies and bound to devices;

The memory maker: Investing in experiences, in a “Roaring Twenties” rerun;

The conscious collaborator: An open ally to accommodations and the community.

When it comes to accommodation, in spite of inflation, 96% of Thai travellers globally say they are happy to spend money beyond the cost of their room. The finding is unsurprising given that almost 9 in 10 local travellers say that what they need from their accommodation has changed in the last year, said SiteMinder.

A “comfortable/inspiring work environment” is what Thai travellers today want most — a finding that correlates to 57% intending to work during their next trip. While that figure has dropped marginally from 65% last year, Thai travellers are the second most likely to work while on their next trip, behind only their Indian peers.

At a global level, accommodation is being sought out as a destination unto itself with 50% of travellers — notably international travellers — looking to spend either “most of the time” or “considerable time” at their accommodation on their next trip. At 77%, this trend is even higher among Thais.

The research affirms the health of Thailand’s travel sector and the critical role played by accommodation providers, said Bradley Haines, regional vice-president for Asia at SiteMinder.

“Contrary to recent years, we are seeing a stronger intent among Thai travellers to travel internationally only and spend money, even amid inflationary pressures,” he said. “Additionally, we are seeing accommodation providers play a more pivotal role than ever before. For 77% of local travellers, the accommodation will serve as the destination.”

While almost 77% of Thai travellers will be tolerant of accommodation providers having lower standards of service in light of staff shortages, a fundamental finding from the report is that the accommodation sector is perceived to be lagging other industries from a technology standpoint.

Over 60% of local respondents think the accommodation industry is either average or behind when it comes to technology adoption, while a remarkable 95% agree that their booking experience and stay could be better if accommodation businesses were more tech-savvy.

SiteMinder’s research revealed how technology use varies among travellers.

AI: More than half of travellers globally, including more than two-thirds of millennials, are either likely or very likely to use AI to generate accommodation recommendations. Thai travellers are even more receptive, with 86% likely to use AI to generate accommodation recommendations.

Social media: Some 70% of travellers globally, including 90% of Generation Z, say social media influences how they discover their accommodation. In Thailand, the influence of social media is even stronger at 25 points above the global average, putting Thai travellers second only to Indonesians when it comes to being influenced by social media during the accommodation discovery process.

Booking websites: While four in five travellers will arrange their accommodation by booking online, three in five say they have not proceeded with their booking because of a bad experience. Processes that are difficult and websites that don’t feel secure are the top two contributors to a bad experience.

“Today’s Thai traveller is enduring, extremely digitally dependent and conscious, with a strong desire to create memories for as long as the privilege of travelling remains available to them,” said Mr Haines.

“Through our research, we now know that they perceive the accommodation industry as being behind when it comes to technology adoption, and accommodation providers should see this as an invitation to invest in modern commerce technology that allows them to best cater for current customer needs and expectations.”


To download the SiteMinder Changing Traveller Report 2023, visit https://tinyurl.com/26me2c7j

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