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Thailand Ends the Year with Over 11 Million Arrivals
30 December 2022 | Written by Chris Alexander

Just as 2022 comes to an end, Thai tourism has reached an important landmark in its revival. On Saturday (24/12), government spokesman Anucha Burapachaisri confirmed that international arrivals for the year had surpassed 11 million.

Burapachaisri was presenting the latest data from Thailand’s Immigration Bureau, which recorded a total of 11.04 million foreign arrivals between January and December 2022. The positive trends are expected to continue into the New Year, with 2023 set to be even bigger for the tourism sector.

“The Tourism and Sports Ministry and various other agencies have been instructed to be prepared to handle the visitors arriving now, and the expected numbers in the future, and revise the tourism plan based on the readiness and potential of the country,” revealed Burapachaisri in his statement.

The data also highlight a number of trends in the travel landscape, helping to map out Thailand’s ongoing tourism revival. For example, the majority of international visitors in 2022 came from Malaysia (1.81 million), followed by India (923,768), Laos (796,220), Singapore (563,594) and Cambodia (562,060).

Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport was the most popular entry port in 2022, with 5.72 million arrivals passing through its doors. Next on the list was Phuket International Airport, which welcomed 1.45 million travellers; and Don Mueang International Airport, where a total of 904,717 tourists began their trip in 2022.

Since Thailand reopened its borders, the kingdom has averaged around 70,000 international visitors per day. In recent months, an influx of Russian travellers has helped to boost these numbers, while the imminent return of the Chinese market is also expected to significantly increase arrivals in the months ahead.

In 2023, Thailand projects around 20 million travellers from foreign markets – around half of the pre-pandemic levels recorded in 2019. The figures are just the latest illustration of Thailand’s commitment to rebounding the travel sector and rebuilding the kingdom’s economy around tourism.

“The premier has stressed the importance of restoring both international and domestic tourism in Thailand, together with spreading revenue to locals and communities,” said Burapachaisri.

Having welcomed more than 11 million travellers in 2022, officials and tourism operators are united in their positive outlook for the New Year. With borders open, restrictions lifted and flights returning, Thailand is ready to go from strength to strength in 2023.