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Chinese Tourism Spending Brings Relief to Northern Thailand Merchants

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Tourists visiting Wat Rong Khun, the "White Temple", one of the top tourist destinations in Chiang Rai
Tourists visiting Wat Rong Khun, the “White Temple”, one of the top tourist destinations in Chiang Rai


CHIANG RAI – The arrival of Chinese Tourists for the Chinese New Year has helped many business owners and tour operators in Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai to enjoying a dramatic jump in income.

Both Provinces have welcome hundreds of thousands of Chinese people who have helped stimulate the local economy. Shop operators and street merchants have reportedly earned three times more during this holiday season.

Hot Tourist destination spots for the Chinese have been the elephant camps in both Provinces, Wat Rong Khun (White Temple) in Phan Chiang Rai and Mae Khajan Hot Springs located on the highway between Chiang Rai and Chiang Mai.

Many of the Chinese tourists have favored activities that include rafting, sightseeing, shopping and fruit orchard tours.

Phayao Provincial Administration Office yesterday reported that a large number of tourist both Thai and foreign nationals have visited the province, joining its Chinese New Year celebration events.

The office boasted this year Phayao is offering a wide range of activities and shows to entertain its guests, highlighting the traditional Chinese Lion and Dragon Dances, a drum show, beauty pageant contests for men and women of Chinese descent, Thai-Chinese cultural shows, and much more.

Phayao Administration said that all of the activities focus on preserving the great cultural bonds between the people of Thailand and China through the revered beliefs and rituals of Buddhism.

A large number of Phayao locals are of Chinese descent, their families arriving in Thailand more than a century ago.

Kasikorn Research Center has forecast that the number of Chinese tourists arriving in Thailand during the first quarter of the year would reach 1.35 million, an increase of 30.2 percent year-on-year. Their spending is expected to generate 54 billion baht in revenue for the tourism sector.

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