PATA slams Royal Orchid price slashing strategy
'Knee-jerk' price cuts will damage Thai tourism further - PATA
The Thailand Pacific Air Travel Association (PATA) has slammed Royal Orchid Holidays (ROH) a division of Thai Airways International for its “self-defeating” tourism strategy of slashing prices by 50 percent.
ROH is also asking hotels in Thailand to add in free dinners, cash vouchers and room upgrades in a bid to bring tourists back following the recent politicial turmoil.
PATA said in a statement: “Just a few weeks ago, the Thailand PATA Chapter expressed the fear that once the latest crisis ended, some international wholesalers would use their position of power to pressure hotels and tour operators to lower contract rates by an unreasonable amount.
“Putting Thai tourism product suppliers under revenue management and cash flow stress does not help Thailand’s tourism industry. It will only create more post-crisis challenges for tourism organisations that have already suffered low occupancy and demand due to the political crisis over the last eight weeks or so.
“It is easy to drop room rates by 50 percent. If we do, it may take up to four years to achieve the same average room rate as 2009/10. That would be a big step backwards.
PATA has asked all stakeholders to join the Tourism Authority of Thailand's 'welcome back' campaign instead of engaging in "knee-jerk price cutting".
It added: “History shows us that while brutal price-cutting may offer some short-term relief, it creates artificial benchmarks that are used against Thailand's hotels and tour operators in the medium and long term.
We, the PATA Chapter members in Thailand, kindly ask Royal Orchid Holidays – and any others considering a similar move – to quickly reconsider their demands and work with the hospitality industry to come up with alternative value-added ideas."