Tourist Arrivals to Thailand by Nationality 2014 and 2015
The number of tourist arrivals in Thailand, with some hiccups, is steadily increasing over the last two decades. Arrivals increased from 10,8 million in 2002 to 14,5 million and 2007, and more than doubled in a decade to 22,35 million in 2012. In 2013 arrivals jumped to 26,55 million, while 2014 saw a decrease in visitors to 24.78 million. 2015 saw another leap in arrivals up to 29,88 million visitors.
Since 2013, by region, East Asia, led by China, provides the highest number of visitors. Up to 2012, the 9 countries of the ASEAN region (mostly Southeast Asian countries) topped the list. Visitors from ASEAN and East Asia seem to be consistently increasing (see graph below), while South Asia (mostly India), Europe, Oceania, Middle East and Africa provide a rather stable numble of visitors in 2013, 2014 and 2015. Please be aware, regarding the graph below : 1) The increase in visitors to 11,985 million from East Asia in 2015 is mostly due to the massive increase in Chinese tourists (7,935 million). 2) The slight decrease in visitors from Europe to 5,629 million in 2015, is mostly due to the dramatic decrease in Russian visitors from 1,6 million in 2014 to 884 thousand tourists in 2015.
From 2012 onwards, China has been taking the top spot as far as providing tourists to Thailand, now way ahead of Malaysia.
Japan, South Korea, and India provide more than a million visitors to Thailand each year. Russia did so in 2014, but not in 2015.
As in earlier times, Thailand receives still more visitors from the United Kingdom than from the U.S.A. despite comparable distances to the country.
End 2013 towards the middle of 2014, was a time of political upheaval in Thailand, and there were somewhat dramatic effect on the number of tourists arriving in the country. The upward trend from the previous years was broken. Overall the number of arrivals decreased by 6.65%. However some double digit decreases in arrivals were evident. Japan, South-Korea, Hong Kong, and most ASEAN countries provided much less visitors in 2014. Europeans were less affected, it seems, since visitors from France, Germany, U.K. barely changed.
2015 however, saw a substantial rise in arrivals. Generally speaking, most countries provided more tourists visiting Thailand. The absolute topper was China. The number of Chinese visiting Thailand rose by no less than 71.14% in 2015, from 4,624 million to 7,935 million. Most countries of the nearby ASEAN countries, and also East Asian countries besides China, provided more visitors, in line mostly with the overall increase in visitors (20.44% increase between 2014 and 2015). Note that the European countries only showed a rather modest increase in tourist visitors to Thailand. As mentioned before, the number of Russians decreased dramatically.
So after a dip in visitors in 2014, 2015 showed a significant increase in visitors to Thailand. You can find a decription of what happened in 2014 and data on arrivals in that year. In the international press, Thailand at present, may be presented with a somewhat negative image, in view of the present not-elected government. However, that does not seem to deter visitors. We rather think that visitors, especially from neighboring countries (and China) prefer a more stable political environment (that is, without street demonstrations or occupation of goverment buildings, airports or traffic intersections), to visit Thailand.
Source : Department of Tourism