If Southeast Asia wants the region to become a single tourist destination, visitors from far countries must be given a single visa to travel freely.
The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) has undertaken a marketing campaign that will target tourists to mark its 50th anniversary this 2017. The marketing campaign is called “Visit Asean@50: Golden Celebration” with the goal of increasing the number of international arrivals by 10% to 121 million, up from the 109 million arrivals in 2015.
ASEAN is composed of member countries that include Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam which can be a single tourist destination with immense diversity. The problem however is whether the average foreign tourist knows about ASEAN. While it is possible that foreigners have heard of Southeast Asia it is important for the policymakers behind the scheme to make sure that the ASEAN brand will be known globally.
If the ASEAN is to be promoted as a single tourist destination, it is important for the 10 members to work together in harmonious collaboration which is usually beyond them. The member-countries must abandon the usual tendency to be anxious that some countries might get the better benefits from this joint effort.
The Southeast Asian region is physically and culturally different which means that a collective tourism scheme will be quite challenging. Each of the member countries has its own unique attractions that must be highlighted to achieve the goal as a single tourist destination.
Tourism is one of the major revenue earners for Southeast Asian countries. In 2015 when 109 million tourists visited the region, tourism generated 12.4% of the region’s gross domestic product. Compared to other industries, tourism does not rely on the government for sustainability but authorities have to ease visa restrictions, build infrastructures and deregulate the skies to facilitate growth.
If your wish is to travel to Thailand, a member-country of ASEAN, your best option is exclusive 5 star resort in Phuket that can be found in an exceptional location. It is located on a lush hilltop and overlooks two magnificent bays. The resort includes a spa and fitness centre to ensure the relaxation of your body and soul.