Young Indians drive surge in travel to Thailand

Young Indians are driving the increased Indian tourist inflows to Thailand with Airbnb reporting a more than 60 per cent year-on-year increase in bookings by Indian guests and tourists to Thailand between 2022 and 2023. This surge in interest, particularly notable during the recent Holi and Easter long weekends, saw searches for Thai stays by Indian travelers increasing by over 200 percent during these periods.

The surge in travel interest is predominantly driven by India’s younger demographic. Gen Z and Millennials, who constitute the largest share of the Indian population, accounted for 80 percent of Airbnb bookings to Thailand in 2023.

According to data from Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism and Sports, India ranks as the fifth largest inbound market for Thailand. The recent boost in travel can be attributed to several factors, including the Thai government’s visa-free policy for Indian citizens, which has been extended until November 11, 2024, and the availability of numerous non-stop daily flights. This policy has significantly lowered barriers to travel, making Thailand an even more attractive destination for Indian tourists.

The most popular destinations for Indian travelers on Airbnb include a mix of vibrant cities and beach locales. Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Krabi, and Koh Samui emerged as the top five destinations. The type of travelers and their preferences indicate a broad spectrum of travel interests. Duo and solo travelers made up the largest segment, while small groups (3-5 people) and medium-sized groups (5+ people) were the fastest growing, with increases of approximately 67 per cent and 68 per cent year-on-year, respectively, in 2023.

Amanpreet Bajaj, Airbnb’s General Manager for Southeast Asia, India, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, commented on the trend, stating, “Travelers from India on Airbnb continue to show their love for Thailand with a growing interest in exploring destinations across the country. We see Indian guests not only visiting top destinations but also exploring lesser-known areas, thereby supporting a more inclusive tourism in Thailand that spreads economic opportunities to more people in more places.”

Indians are now also driving the global tourism market as many countries have announced visa free travel for Indian tourists, particularly in Asia.


Sidhant Sibal

Sidhant Sibal is the principal diplomatic correspondent for WION. When he is not working, you will find him playing with his dog.


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