At ASEAN Tourism Forum (ATF) 2023, which was generally viewed as a platform for tighter cooperation on the recovery and promotion of the area’s tourist hotspots to the rest of the globe, revitalizing tourism in the region was on the minds of every nation delegate.

The following are the 3 main takeaways from the forum this year:

1. Pursuing reputable visitors

Sustainable and community-based tourism go hand in hand with the strategy for attracting high-quality visitors. Quality travelers are more inclined to seek out community initiatives, cultural events, and outdoor activities. They are also more interested in experiential tourism.

2. Community over competition

Now that Beijing has permitted its citizens to freely travel outside of China, everyone is eager to gain a piece of the high-spending Chinese tourism market.

While Shanina Samsuri, senior assistant director, international promotion division Southeast Asia, Tourism Malaysia, acknowledged that Malaysia like other ASEAN nations, is eager to attract more Chinese tourists to the country, she added that there also needs to be an approach of working together for the greater good.

3. Putting money into infrastructure

Five of ASEAN’s ten countries were listed among the world’s 50 most beautiful locales, according to a Forbes report. Yet, connectivity is still a problem for many countries.

“For Laos, infrastructural weaknesses are our immediate barriers,” said Sengsoda Vanthanouvong, deputy director general of tourism marketing department at Laos’ Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism. “If we want to capture the Chinese and Indonesia market, we need access to direct flights from China and Indonesia respectively to boost tourist arrivals.”

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