REUTERS: Thailand expects tourism to generate revenues of 15 billion baht (US $ 428.08 million) during the three-day Songkran festival, some 10 percent more than last year, the country’s tourism minister said on the eve of the water festival.
Sometimes referred to as the world’s biggest water fight, the festival marks the beginning of Thailand’s traditional New Year and is a major tourist attraction, and a time when Thais visit family and perform religious purification ceremonies.
Tourism Minister Kobkarn Wattanavrangkul said 495,000
foreign tourists will visit Thailand during the festival, which starts today and ends on Friday.
“About 15 billion baht (US $ 428.08 million) will circulate during Songkran,” Kobkarn told reporters. “This is around 10 percent more than last year.”
This year authorities are calling for restraint during the festival to help conserve water as Thailand faces its worst drought in decades.
That hasn’t stopped revellers from taking part in the festivities which have already kicked off in partsof
International tourist arrivals in 2016 are expected to hit a record high of 32 million compared with 29.88 million last year.