The top 10 arrival markets were China, Malaysia, Japan, South Korea, Laos, India, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Singapore and Britain.
International tourists generated tourism income of B168 billion in August, up 2.7% year-on-year. The top spenders were from China, Malaysia, Japan, South Korea and Britain, said Tourism and Sports Permanent Secretary Pongpanu Svetarundra.
Cumulative foreign arrivals for the first eight months this year totalled 25.8mn, up 9.9% year-on-year. Foreign tourists contributed B1.3 trillion, a gain of 12.8%.
For the domestic market, local residents made 13.1mn trips in July this year, up 2.3% year-on-year, and generated income of B86.1bn, up 6.6% from the same month last year.
To assure foreign tourists of safety while travelling in Thailand, the Tourism Department has been carrying out a series of training courses for tour guides to boost sea travel safety, it was explained yesterday.
The department is giving lifesaving, first aid and emergency care training to more than 1,000 tourist guides and tourism personnel across the country to strengthen marine safety.
Director-General Anan Wongbenjarat said precautions taken systematically on marine safety are among the policies mandated to maintain Thailand's tourism competitiveness and strengthen tourist confidence.
Intensive training courses on safety issues have been carried out for more than 1,000 tour guides, tourism workers and volunteers in Bangkok, Chon Buri, Kanchanaburi, Songkhla, Satun, Chumphon and Phuket as part of precautionary safety measures, Mr Anan said.
The training courses have been arranged from July to the end of this month, with expansion for training courses to cover more people under consideration.
Since stormy seas and extreme weather conditions have become more frequent, the tourism industry's readiness to provide emergency care when accidents or natural disasters strike has become particularly important to ensure tourist safety.
The Bureau of Tourism Business and Guide Registration is working with Go Eco Phuket, a group of professional scuba divers and environmentalists in Phuket, to train tour guides and other tourism personnel on lifesaving and first-aid skills so they can perform emergency care correctly during critical moments at sea.
For the training course, the bureau is also working with the National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department, as well as the Marine Department, to educate tour guides and tourism personnel on marine resources and regulations to protect marine ecosystems.
"Lifesaving skills will help reduce casualties when accidents at sea occur," Mr Anan said. "It also strengthens the network of safety and environmentally conscious tour guides and tourism personnel, which is important for sustainable tourism."
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