Every year, the Songkran festival is a time when Thais return to their home provinces to celebrate the Thai New Year with their families, while others go on day trips or overnight stays. Regarding tourism during the 2022 Songkran holiday, KResearch views that the overall trend for Thailand’s domestic tourism will likely improve since a majority of Thais have received two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine as well as a booster shot, lending certain groups a degree of confidence to travel domestically. At the same time, the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) has relaxed some COVID-19 control measures on Songkran activities including processions, water fights and other recreational events under established conditions. As a result, many local authorities aiming to organize Songkran celebrations and businesses in the tourism industry have renewed their promotional efforts to further boost domestic tourism. The ‘We Travel Together’ scheme is another factor that supports such developments.
However, the daily number of confirmed COVID-19 cases remains high, alongside hefty living costs stemming from rising prices of goods and energy. These factors are expected to affect travel plans of some potential holidaymakers during this period. KResearch projects that approximately 4.6 million domestic trips (overnight trips, homebound trips with tourism activities on the side, and cross-provincial day trips) will be made by Thai tourists during the nine-day celebration of the Songkran festival from April 9 to April 17, 2022 – representing growth of 2.2 percent YoY. Overall, domestic tourism will continue to see an uneven recovery , with Thais showing a preference for short-distance trips and major seaside cities.
In terms of tourism expenditures during Songkran 2022, the projected average spending per trip has slightly decreased, influenced by pricing strategies and changes in travel behaviors that are consistent with the ongoing COVID-19 situation and purchasing power. KResearch assesses that tourism spending during the 2022 Songkran festival will amount to THB 22.3 billion, or growth of merely 1.2 percent YoY.