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Krabi Tourism Boom – 2011 the Busiest Year Ever!

Krabi Tourism Boom – 2011 the Busiest Year Ever!

Article by Farooq Akbar Khan

Just like its close neighbour Phuket, Krabi is enjoying a massive boom in tourism which looks set to continue until the end of 2011 and beyond. The sudden surge in tourist numbers is providing a welcome economic boost for the myriad of Krabi hotels and resorts, from budget backpacker hostels in Railay Beach to the luxury resorts in Ao Nang, who are all witnessing a huge growth in occupancy rates.

Tourists have been flocking to Krabi for many years, but this year they appear to be arriving in ever increasing numbers, keen to explore the breathtaking scenery and enjoy the exhilarating sporting and leisure activates on offer in this beautiful province. So what is the reason for this sudden influx of tourists to Krabi in 2011, particularly during such a challenging global economy?

Well, tourism is on the increase in Thailand overall, with the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) projecting that revenue from both international and domestic tourism will reach 1 trillion baht and that the total number of international visitors will surpass 15 million in 2011. TAT has been focusing on promoting Thailand as the destination of choice for new niche tourist markets such as female and wellness travellers and their sustained campaigns and marketing activities seem to be paying off, luring more tourists to Thailand than ever before.

Krabi is more than capable of satisfying the demands of these modern tourists and is fast developing a strong reputation for top quality eco tourism, in addition to its traditional holiday market. Tourists with new, disposable income from many of the developing countries such as China, South Korea and Russia are also discovering Krabi, adding to its army of devoted fans from Europe, the US and Australia.

This year, the months of January and February alone saw a substantial increase in Krabi villa and hotel bookings, partly attributed to the poor winter in Europe, Chinese New Year and half term holidays. Tourists desperate to escape the bleak economic downturn and dismal weather in their own countries are turning to the beautiful Krabi climate and the outstanding value for money that Krabi holidays offer, for a much needed vacation. So much so, that many resorts and hotels in Krabi are complaining that flights to Krabi are over booked and insufficient to cater for the increase in demand.

A number of projects designed to improve passenger numbers at Phuket international airport should have a positive, knock-on effect for Krabi resorts and hotels – a long term expansion project is due to begin in 2012 and complete in 2014. Krabi International Airport itself will benefit from a new and regular, non-stop service from both Oslo and Munich to Krabi, which will begin in December 2011 and provide much, needed extra capacity.

To cope with the dramatic swell in tourist numbers, Krabi construction companies are busy with a number of new high profile projects that will significantly improve the number of quality hotels and resorts in the region. Both the Mercure Krabi Deevana in Ao Nang and the Beyond Resort Krabi in Klong Muang are scheduled for completion in the last quarter of 2011. The Centara Grand Lanta Island resort in Koh Lanta will begin welcoming its first customers in 2012 and the Ibis Krabi Ao Nang is expected to open its doors in 2013.

Whatever the future holds, Krabi is well on course to achieving record tourism figures simply because it is flexible and willing enough to adapt and offer its world famous hospitality to an ever changing and fickle holiday market.

About the Author

Travelkrabi.com is now offering special packages and services for Krabi hotels and luxury Krabi resorts for the tourists.

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