In 2021, for the 5th time, Bangkok became the most visited city in the world. Nearly 23 million people visited the capital of Thailand that year. The closest rivals; Paris and London had nearly 4 million fewer visitors showing that despite the pandemic, Thailand is still extremely popular for domestic and international tourism.
Of course, Covid impacted tourism in Thailand severely though. From receiving a record number of 39,916,250 visitors in 2019, arrivals plummeted to 427,869. However, throughout 2022, arrivals in Thailand have risen month after month. October saw 1.5 million visitors to the country which was up from 1.3 million the previous month.
Thailand now looks as if it will return to pre-pandemic levels sooner rather than later. This is good news for neighboring countries such as Laos that rely on tourists spilling over from the Land of Smiles and spending money.
But, what actually makes Thailand the perfect destination in 2023?
Is Thailand Still An Affordable Destination?
One of the things that is attractive about Thailand is that it has something for everyone no matter what budget they may be on. Many people choose Thailand as a place to stay long-term and work. Living in Thailand on $500 / month is perfectly possible, and in the right location can be very comfortable.
For holidaymakers, and backpackers, the basics are very affordable. As this article was written, the exchange rate was 1 USD to 34.67 THB. To make this clearer, a meal from a street vendor will cost between 30 and 60 THB, so $1 to $2. You shouldn’t expect western-sized portions, but you can certainly make a budget stretch.
Accommodation varies depending on your requirements. A search on Booking.com shows that a room for two with a fan and breakfast included is available for $7.50.
Of course, Thailand has luxury resorts also for those less worried about their wallets. For example, the lowest price found for 2 adults for 2 nights in Chiang Mai was $11, and the highest was $374 online.
Perhaps one of the reasons that Thailand attracts such a diverse group of visitors is that the country caters to all levels of travel budgets.
What Type Of Visitors Does Thailand Attract?
All manner of individuals visit Thailand each year, and many of them stay longer than expected. Some come for a holiday and end up returning to open a business and marry. Thailand has given visa exemptions to passport holders from 64 countries making it easy to enter the country and travel within.
This has led to a diverse group of visitors including the following:
- Digital nomads
- Expats and retirees
- Long-term visitors
Many of those that stay will find work online or teach English as a second language in one of the many schools and colleges throughout the land.
What Makes Thailand The Ideal Destination In 2023?
Thailand offers so much to such a wide group of people that it could be described as the perfect destination for many individuals. It is a popular marriage location, and the islands and beaches make it the perfect honeymoon destination also.
Ease Of Travel
There are 38 airports in Thailand and a number of budget airlines operating making it easy to travel around without spending a fortune. For those who are backpacking, there are VIP buses and ferries carrying tourists to islands and other destinations.
Private hire vehicles, tuk-tuks, motorbike taxis, metered cabs, and trains, also help people to get around cities and the countryside.
From jungles to beaches, sparkling blue waters to ancient temples, and limestone karsts, Thailand has everything.
It Has A Mix Of history And Modernity
The cities in Thailand are an incredible mix of high-tech modern architecture and temples that have stood for centuries.
It Is An Excellent Travel Hub
For those wishing to travel further afield in Southeast Asia, Thailand is the perfect destination. From there it is simple to get to Laos, Malaysia, and Vietnam. If you want to fulfill your Cambodian bucket list, then Thailand is a great place to use as a base.
It Has Home Comforts
If anyone visits Thailand and neglects to try the local food then they will miss out on one of the world’s most amazing cuisines. However, there are times when you just need something that feels familiar. There is every type of restaurant you can imagine in Thailand, so you will never be stuck for something to eat.
It’s A Shopper’s Paradise
From upmarket shops for hi-so consumers to markets, Thailand has everything for sale that you could wish for. And as long as you are respectful and sensible, haggling can see you get a bargain on some market stalls.
Thailand has long been on the backpacker trail but there are luxury resorts, affordable villas, and budget guesthouses and dorms. So, it is perfect for couples, solo travelers, and families.
Long-term visitors can arrange visas easily, and accommodation is cheap as is the food. The country is swamped with sunshine and has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
2023 is going to see a lot more people traveling to Thailand but there are still many quieter destinations in the country for those wishing to avoid the crowds.