Thailand’s thriving Muslim tourism boom with mosque tour
Thailand’s thriving Muslim tourism boom with mosque tourLegacy

In a bid to elevate Thailand to the zenith of the Global Muslim Tourism Index (GMTI), the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) teamed up with key figures like Imam Mathanarat Vacharapisut from the Haroon Mosque and the Islamic Committee of Bangkok to revolutionise cultural tourism for Muslim travellers.

Imam Mathanarat Vacharapisut recently joined forces with Thapanee Kiatphaibool, Governor of TAT, in a pivotal meeting. Together, they’ve outlined an ambitious strategy aimed at showcasing Thailand’s stunning architectural marvels: its mosques. Dubbed the Mosque Tour, this innovative initiative will spotlight ten magnificent mosques across Bangkok, with the iconic Haroon Mosque leading the pack.

But it’s not just about aesthetics, it’s about setting a gold standard for Muslim-friendly tourism (MFT) and hospitality (MFTH) services. By enhancing these services, Thailand aims to beckon Muslim tourists from across the globe, particularly during the holy month of Ramadan, reported Pattaya Mail.

The grand unveiling of the Mosque Tour will kick off at the prestigious ITB Berlin 2024 tourism event in Germany from March 5 to 7. TAT will showcase this remarkable route during the Thailand Travel Mart (TTM+ 2024) event in Phang-nga province from June 5 to 7.

In related news, with a significantly decreased budget from its 2019 benchmark, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) faces the daunting task of increasing foreign arrivals from 28 million in 2023 to 40 million in just a year. The drastic goal was deliberated last Tuesday when Chai Wacharonke, government spokesperson, revealed potential plans to boost arrivals to this figure, spurred by new initiatives like the reciprocal visa-free scheme between Thailand and China.

In other news, Suvarnabhumi International Airport is facing daily traffic congestion as vehicles compete for parking spaces. The problem is compounded by long queues at immigration and baggage claim areas due to inoperative kiosks and staff shortages. Tourist complaints prompted an unannounced visit from Prime Minister Srettha Thavisin, who has since ordered airport authorities to quicken procedures to under 30 minutes per passenger.

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Author: Nattapong Westwood