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Tourism Demand for Lampang Province : A Quantitative Approach Print E-mail

Komsan Suriya*
Faculty of Economics, Chiang Mai University

*Corresponding author: skomsan @econ.cmu.ac.th


ABSTRACT


Lampang province is a famous province for tourism in Northern Thailand. The province is an only province in Thailand that let horse carriages operate for tourism. Moreover, there are a lot of tourism sites and events including historical, natural, and cultural sites and events. The research of ?Tourism Demand for Lampang : A Quantitative Approach? was aimed to five objectives ; to construct a database of tourists visiting Lampang, to study the tourism demand for Lampang, to study factors affecting revisit to the province, to study factors affecting tourists? expenditures in Lampang, and to investigate the potential of new tourism products in Lampang. Data collection was launched in 2003. The samples were divided into 3 groups: 520 Thai tourists found in Lampang, 500 Chiang Mai people, and 300 foreign tourists found in Chiang Mai. Total number of observations were 1,320.

 Major finding for the Thai tourists found in Lampang was that Lampang was seemingly suitable for visitors driving private cars. It was because touring sites in Lampang were scattered and far away from one another. Major group of the tourists were youngsters, aging between 25 ? 34 years old. Their salaries ranged between 5,000 ? 8,000 baht per month. Mostly they came by group. Moreover, half of the Thai tourists were from the North.

 Expectation of the natural beauty was the major drive for the Thai tourists to Lampang. After visiting, the tourists showed no difference between their satisfaction and the prior expectation. In addition, satisfied tourists also tended to purchase souvenirs and try new tourism products. The Thai tourists were statistically predictable to visit Lampang more than once a year ( 1.27 times). Besides, the number of visit would be increased if expenditures of the trip could be lessened. Income of tourists was another factor positively drove up the number of visit. Male tourists, furthermore, seemed to come back to visit Lampang more often than the female. The appreciation of touring sites especially the natural beauty played the major role for the demand to revisit.

 Major finding for Chiang Mai people was that half of them were interested to visit Lampang in the next year round. This finding was supported by information that 20 percent of the Thai tourists found in Lampang were from Chiang Mai. The Chiang Mai market, accordingly, was thus at high potential for Lampang tourism promotion.

 Chiang Mai people was driven by the old heritage and beautifully natural scenery of Lampang. They mentioned especially the pleasure receivable along the forestry highway route between Chiang Mai and Lampang. However, three major obstacles blocking Chiang Mai people to visit Lampang were no enough free time, demand for living at home, and too high frequency of visit. Moreover, they also mentioned that there was no newly exciting site or event released to attract tourists to Lampang.

 Major finding for foreign tourists found in Chiang Mai was that 65 percent of them knew Lampang. They were given information of the province via guide books mostly written in English. The knowledge of Lampang not only arouse the foreign tourists to visit Lampang but also captured them in Lampang?s accommodations. The reason was that information made tourists have exact places aiming to visit while the scattered places made them spend more than a day to fulfill. Foreign tourists revealed high interest and expectation in Lampang?s natural beauty and the cultural heritage. Accordingly, they mostly aimed for natural touring sites.

 Information showed highly significance in attraction of the foreign tourists to Lampang. Unless knowing Lampang, most of foreigners showed no willingness to visit the province. On the other hand, receiving more information of other provinces drove this group of tourists to those provinces instead, and remained not enough time for Lampang. Thus, informational competition should be at high concern for Lampang tourism promotion.

Keywords: Tourism, Demand, Lampang, Quantitative approach

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Proceeding presented in the Asian Forum on Business Education Conference (AFBE 2005), 30 November ? 2 December 2005, in Ubon Ratchathani, Thailand



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