The number of South African holidaymakers to Thailand increased 17,8% last year. Picture: Pexels.

Stats reveal that more South Africans are travelling to Thailand.

 According to the marketing representative for the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), Lesley Simpson, the number of South African holidaymakers to Thailand increased 17,8% last year.

From almost 80 000 the previous year, the numbers have increased to 93 000.

“TAT South Africa’s objective this past year has been to target different markets to encourage holidaymakers to return Thailand,” she said.

She said the potential growth areas are in the LGBT market, as well as group travel, which they will continue to promote with their travel trade partners in 2018.

Known over the years as a country for its innovative destination marketing, Thailand has also launched a magnificent new consumer advertising campaign called “Open to the New Shades of Thailand”, encouraging visitors to discover new perspectives in existing attractions. Themes reflecting this include gastronomy, nature and beach, arts and crafts, culture, and way of life. It reaches specific target segments, including luxury travellers, weddings and honeymooners, female travellers, families and Generation Y.  


Some of the examples of the new “shades” of Thailand is the annual Songkran Festival (Thai new year) which is celebrated differently in each region, 10 different kinds of Pad Thai and uncountable types of soups to enjoy.

Simpson said all 77 provinces in Thailand offer different experiences. 2018 has been nominated as Thailand’s ‘year for gastronomy’ opening an exciting new chapter in Thailand’s dynamic culinary evolution.


“We are very excited at this increase of South African tourists to Thailand.

“It proves that Thailand continues to offer South Africans not only value for money, but that its structure is sufficiently efficient to get around and explore different areas whether it is the bustling capital of Bangkok, laid back Chiang Mai in the north, islands and their beautiful beaches, remote villages or jungles. Thailand simply offers it all,” added Simpson.