The Nation



Japan most desirable foreign destination for Thais

According to global travel search site Skyscanner, Thai vacationers fell in love with Japan this year.

A comprehensive analysis of flight searches made by local travellers by Skyscanner revealed Japan as the country most Thais wanted to visit this year.

Japan's appeal was universal, as it was the most searched destination for Thai families and for single travellers.

In addition, Tokyo was the most searched international city, while Osaka was fast becoming a popular destination, coming in at No 7 on the top-10 city list.

"Based on our travel-search data, Japan was the star attraction for Thai tourists in 2013, and this trend is likely to continue," said Grace Pobpapha Areerat, Skyscanner's marketing manager for Thailand.

"Japan is relatively close and appeals to Thais of all ages - they love Tokyo, Osaka, and many other regional spots. Japan offers a lot to see and do, including great shopping and food, spectacular scenery, historic temples, cooler weather, and popular attractions such as Disneyland and Universal Studios.

"There were other key factors like the visa waiver introduced in July, and a more favourable exchange rate, that also played a significant part in making Japan No 1 in 2013," Areerat added.

South Korea was another popular Asian destination, generating significant interest from many young Thais.

"Seoul was the No 2 most popular city for Thai singles. This reflects the tremendous influence of Hallyu or the global Korean wave of culture, food, films, TV shows, pop singers and bands that is garnering huge numbers of fans in Thailand," Areerat said.

Besides Japan and South Korea, the United States, the United Kingdom and China were also top would-be destinations for Thai travellers. The top five international cities were Tokyo, London, Singapore, Seoul and Hong Kong.

In terms of the most popular time for Thais to travel overseas, August was the peak month.

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