Group tours soar, outbound family trips rise

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Visitors are on vacation at Ngwesaung Beach during holidays.

As there are tour packages organized by travel companies, group travels have been large and there are family vacations in oversea countries, said Myanmar Tourism Entrepreneurs Association chair U Naung Naung Han.

Majority of local visitors prefer cheap tour packages and it is expected that the number of local visitors will rise in Thingyan holidays.

“Visitor number usually gets high in Thingyan holidays. Recently, the number of overseas trips has also increased too much. So have domestic trips. Domestic tours are cheap. Passport process poses a difficulty, so it is not easy to take group tour overseas. That is why, local companies arrange domestic tour packages mainly for group travels. There are some companies which provide overseas tour packages. So, currently, group tours have been increasing. Majority of destinations for family tours are overseas countries,” said U Naung Naung Han.

Chaungthar and Ngwesaung beaches as well as other prominent destinations such as Bagan, Mandalay and Kalaw, Pindaya and Inle in Shan State are predicted to boom especially with local visitors during Thingyan, he said.

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Visitors are on vacation at Ngwesaung Beach during holidays.

“For Thingyan, Chaungthar and Ngwesaung are in high demand. Tour packages for these destinations are being sold a lot. Domestic tour packages to safe areas such as Mandalay and Bagan have been arranged and there are enthusiastic customers. People travel to local destinations- beaches and famous tourist attraction sites such as Bagan, Mandalay, and Kalaw, Pindaya and Inle in Shan State. So we have expected these destinations will be lively especially with loads of local visitors,” he said.

The foreign visitor arrival reached the highest in January and February but gradually declined in March. The decline in foreign visitor arrival happened a month earlier in this year’s tour season than pre-Covid- 19 period.

“Normally, this is the last moment of tour season. But compared to pre-Covid-19 period, the number of foreign visitors was still large in March and started declining in Thingyan. Saying generally, the number of visitor was usually large in March. But in this year, the number of visitors visibly increased in around January and February and declined in March, meaning the visitor arrival came earlier than the tour season. But there is still visitor arrival. Before Covid-19, there were visitors from countries all round the world. Now our tour industry has to rely on eastern customers such as Thailand and China because the arrival of western customers declined. So, Thailand’s tours are similar to Myanmar’s and they have water festival too. That is why, the visitors arrival has declined,” he explained.



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