Emirates signs agreement with Thailand to promote tourism

Airline and tourism board will explore joint initiatives as Thailand reopens to fully vaccinated travellers

Dancers from Thailand perform in front of the Thai pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai. AFP
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Emirates, the world's largest long-haul airline, signed an initial pact with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (Tat) to promote tourism to the country after it fully reopened to vaccinated travellers this month.

The tourism body and the airline will explore joint initiatives and opportunities that will enhance marketing and promotional efforts to attract travellers to Thailand, Emirates said in a statement on Friday.

“Emirates launched operations to Thailand more than 30 years ago, and its destinations are among the most popular in our South-East Asian network, especially amongst holidaymakers from the US, Europe and the Middle East,” said Orhan Abbas, senior vice president of Emirates' commercial operations — Far East.

“We look forward to highlighting its diverse offerings to industry stakeholders and customers and helping them achieve their tourism targets to support Thailand’s post-pandemic recovery.”

Thailand started permitting quarantine-free entry from February 1 for vaccinated travellers from all destinations. The Thai government said it expects more than 200,000 travellers to make use of the new Test & Go services in February alone.

Emirates launched services to Bangkok in 1990, and in 2012, it added direct flights to the resort island of Phuket, which became a popular holiday destination for passengers, the airline said.

Following an initial suspension in travel due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Emirates resumed flights to Bangkok in September 2020 and currently provides two daily services to the Thai capital using the Boeing 777-300ER as well as an additional daily flight aboard its flagship A380 aircraft.

Emirates also flies to Phuket 11 times weekly.

Under the agreement, the airline will develop initiatives to boost tourism to the country by showcasing the destination to customers from across its global network, spanning almost 130 destinations.

Emirates will also engage in efforts to promote the country through its network of agents in key strategic markets and collaborate on joint familiarisation trips designed to appeal to various customer segments.

“Tat will assist Emirates in developing airline passenger traffic from key strategy markets by supporting tour operators and travel agents in agreed target markets across the Emirates network with promotional giveaways, special promotional packages, incentives and marketing spend,” Tat governor Yuthasak Supasorn said.

Updated: May 19, 2023, 4:06 PM