2023-01-25 05:09:06

Asia Travel Hotspots Quiet as Chinese Tourists Stay Away

Logo U.S. News & World Report
U.S. News & World Report
By Associated Press

CHIANG MAI, Thailand (AP) Just a handful of Chinese visitors were posing for photos and basking in the sun this week in the market and plazas near Chiang Mais ancient Tha Phae Gate, one of many tourist hotspots still waiting for millions of Chinese travelers to return.

The beaches and temples of destinations like Bali and Chiang Mai are the busiest they have been since the pandemic struck three years ago, but theyre still relatively quiet.

Still, Chanatip Pansomboon, a soft drinks seller in the Chinatown district of Chiang Mai, a scenic riverside city in northern Thailand, was upbeat. He trusts that with the number of flights from China steadily increasing, it's only a matter of time.

If a lot of them can return, it will be great as they have buying power, Chanatip said.

The expected resumption of group tours from China is likely to bring far more visitors. For now, it's only individual travelers who can afford to pay, with flights costing more than triple what they normally do, who are venturing abroad.

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