World through my eyes
When it comes to hospitality, no country comes closer to perfection than Thailand. It offers something for everyone of diverse interest, every age and every budget. From pristine sandy beaches to lush jungles, bustling cities to traditional villages, Michelin star menus to roadside noodle stalls, historic Buddhist temples to 21st century sky scrapers, Thailand is truly amazing!
Amazing Thailand also has amazing golf facilities. Ideally located more than 250 golf courses throughout the country, by the sea, by the mountains, by the lakes, inside the cities even besides the airports. Top quality courses, reasonable green fees, friendly caddies. From the beach resorts in the south such as Phuket to the mountainous surroundings in the north or the bustling cities of Bangkok and Pattaya, there are golf courses to suit every preference. Needless to say that Golf Tourism is already a thriving category worldwide and Thailand is a big part of it.
It is often said that arguably Thailand is one of the greatest places to visit and play golf. It has attracted professionals and amateurs alike. Such is the charm of playing golf at exotic locations in Thailand is that even many novices have started teeing very frequently. To cash on this passion of playing golf in Thailand, Thai Golf Passport was launched in January this year. This first ever golf loyalty program aimed to a country now enters season two. An event was held at Delhi Golf Club to mark this occasion hosted by Anil Dev, Managing Director, SLW.
We said last year that there are number of reasons to visit Thailand and play golf… and Thai Golf Passport was newest of them. It has been encouraging journey in the first 12 months of the rewards program. The site is up, partners are joining and response from golfers is great. The program was launched by SLW, a leading Golf management company in partnership with Tourism Authority of Thailand, Thai Airways, Cox & Kings, Callaway among others. India’s leading woman professional golfer Vani Kapoor was there at the launch of the program in January. She is still the brand ambassador of the program.
Isra Stapanaseth, Director Tourism Authority of Thailand at New Delhi was again present at the start of season 2 of Thai Golf Pass. He said that Thai Golf Passport creates a membership that shares common values and interests and at the same time provides an engaging golfing and networking platform for all stake holders. Chitranjan Bakhshi, Business Head, Golf Holidays, Cox & Kings said that Thai Golf Passport is a great initiative for golf tourists to enjoy seamless service. Rajan Sehgal, President Indian Golf Travel Association also expressed his views.
Thai Golf Pass is actually a loyalty program, first of its kind for any country. It is aimed to give a seamless golf experience exclusive to Thailand. This program brings all suppliers under one platform which is fully automised and user friendly. Users earn loyalty points on bookings and whatever they spend on site. They get attractive discounts from suppliers. Later they earn amazing rewards on redemption of loyalty points.
More on Golf: Golf in Paradise or a Golfer’s Paradise
Inaugural season was encouraging. After the launch of the website, there were two promotional events—one each in India and Thailand. So far program has 83 partners which include airlines, golf courses, operators and hotels. There have already been 2307 membership registrations and 522 golfers have travelled to Thailand under Thai Golf Pass. In season 2, aim is to increase number of loyalty partners to 200 and membership to 5000 golfers.
It wasn’t so that Thailand was lagging behind in Tourist inflows, but Golf Tourism has given altogether new reason to be in Thailand and as Isra Stapanaseth said it, this has brought altogether new places into the tourism mainstream of Thailand, putting focus on destinations beyond Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket. Time for some fun!
Have you ever played golf at any of courses in Thailand? How was the experience? Share with us in the comments section below.
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