Streamlined services are essential for the international MICE traveller, and TCEB is focussed on providing the very best in services and support for the MICE industry which has the added benefit of promoting the good image of Thailand as the key MICE destination in Asia. Such distinctive and impressive services to welcome international MICE travellers are key reasons that so many MICE organisers choose to hold their events in Thailand.
2. Visa-Free Policy for Tourists from China and Kazakhstan, and Visa Extension Period for Russian Nationals
Thailand has exempted visa requirements for nationals holding passports or passport replacement documents from China and Kazakhstan. This special visa-exemption policy is effective from 25 September 2023 to 29 February 2024 and allows the relevant persons to stay in the Kingdom of Thailand for not more than 30 days. Additionally, the period of visa-exempt travel for tourism for holders of Russian passports or passport replacement documents has been extended from 30 days to 90 days in a move to stimulate tourism. This temporary extension for Russian nationals applies for the period from 1 November 2023 until 30 April 2024.
The moves are expected to make travel to Thailand easier for tourists from those countries, especially family groups, tour groups, and incentive groups. To facilitate the expected additional arrivals, the Airports of Thailand Public Co. Ltd. (AOT) has added an additional 400 personnel to man its immigration desks around the clock.
3. Driving Thailand to become a Sustainable MICE and Tourism Destination
1) TCEB has included a sustainability strategy in its 5-year action plan called “Go for MICE Sustainability” with a target of 500 events in five years. By 2027 the forecast is for 40 million domestic and international MICE travellers generating an estimated income of 200 billion baht.
2) TCEB’s aim is to position Thailand as a “High-Value-Added Destination”, or a destination that creates added value for the organisation of events. The host country is capable of having a positive impact on events in line with global social and business trends and United Nations goals by adding value for sustainable, reduced carbon-emitting events in Thailand.
3) TCEB is developing local capabilities to meet international standards by importing courses for local personnel. Courses are available for MICE entrepreneurs at both the organisation and individual level, and provide training in knowledge and practical applications of sustainable practices. At present more than 1,300 individuals have completed courses in a range of curricula.
4) TCEB implements standards to support and guarantee sustainable management practices at national and international levels. More than 100 organisations have already received certification of such standards.
5) TCEB is bringing the ICCA Annual Congress 2023 to Thailand in November 2023. We continue to drive Thailand as a high-value-added destination and the ICCA event aims to be a completely carbon neutral event.
6) TCEB is promoting the “Green Meeting” concept within the Thai MICE industry and is currently raising awareness before laying out a master plan and guidelines for Green Meetings in Thailand in line with the United Nations’ sustainable development goals. The plan will include sustainability training, creating a pilot project for MICE venues to purchase organic food products directly from farmers, and the establishment of national sustainability standards for MICE venues. The initial focus will be on getting Thailand’s 10 recognised MICE cities to join the Global Destination Sustainability Index (GDS) and become a driving force in the organisation of sustainable events.