Taiwan achieves Q1 international tourist target faster than expected

 Tuesday, March 14, 2023 


According to the Taiwan Tourism Bureau, the country will welcome its one millionth international visitor of the first quarter at the end of this month, which is sooner than projected.

The Bureau had set a goal of attracting 820,000 international tourists during the first quarter, but it exceeded that objective earlier than planned, according to International Affairs Division Director Huang Shih-fang.

According to Bureau Deputy Director-General Trust Lin, the Taiwan Lantern Festival and an extensive international tourism marketing campaign helped the Bureau meet its objective.

“We need to intensify our tourism marketing in Japan. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Japan was our second-largest source of international tourists,” Lin said.

But, the return of Japanese visitors has been minimal, owing to Tokyo’s extension of domestic travel subsidies from this month until the start of summer, he added.

According to the Bureau, South Korea has emerged as the greatest source of international tourists so far this year, with Taiwan already reporting a modest increase in South Korean tourists prior to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Bureau data, Taiwan received 696,474 outbound tourists and 254,359 inbound visitors from October of last year to January of this year.

According to Regina Chan, Booking.com Taiwan region manager, the majority of inbound tourists who arrived when Taiwan reopened its borders in the middle of last year came for business.

She claims that as a result of foreign media coverage of Taiwan and developments in cross-strait ties, more international visitors desire to visit Taiwan.

Taiwan may attract visitors from the New Southbound Policy countries as well as those from Europe and North America with more diversified tour arrangements, such as those focusing on religion and natural scenery in Taiwan, she added.

In related news, the Travel Quality Assurance Association (TQAA) said on Friday that the cost of group trips from Taiwan to Asian countries such as Japan and Southeast Asia is projected to drop by 10 to 20% in the second quarter compared to the previous quarter.

According to the travel agency trade group, the yen’s devaluation and cheaper airline rates will reduce group travel expenditures to Japanese cities.

The group expects five-day vacations to Osaka to cost NT$42,800 to NT$62,800 during the cherry blossom season next month and NT$33,900 to NT$55,900 in May and June, citing Tokyo and Osaka as the most popular locations for Taiwanese.

Nonetheless, tour group expenses to the United States, Canada, and Europe are likely to grow further in the April-June season, according to the TQAA.

The sequential rise in travel expenditures to US and Canadian markets is likely to reach 30 to 40% in the third quarter, indicating greater transportation and hotel expenses, rising airfares and bus charges, and a labour scarcity.

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