KResearch has conducted a survey on Bangkok residents' spending behavior during Songkran 2012, March 5-15, based on a sampling group of 616 persons, aged 15-65. From the survey, KResearch expects that Songkran spending this year will surge to over THB28.5 billion, increasing 7 percent YoY.
The spending atmosphere and relevant activities will likely be more active than during the past New Year holiday. Despite a higher cost of living due to hikes in fuel and other product prices, consumers may have sufficient purchasing power for higher spending during Songkran as a result of better economic conditions overall after flooding. Thus, Bangkok residents' concerns toward economic problems are subsiding and they have more confidence in the economy at home. Better feeling of consumers after the flooding situation will also help boost the spending mood during this holiday.
Although insurgency in Southern Thailand prior to Songkran at the popular holiday destination, i.e., Hat Yai, Songkhla, may affect the tourism atmosphere there, the impact on spending by Bangkok residents may be only slight as Hat Yai is not a major destination for them. However, the Southern situation may locally reduce revenue from foreign tourists over the short term, e.g., Malaysians, the major tourist group for Hat Yai.
Although there will be only four consecutive days in this year's festival, more Bangkok residents will likely travel outside Bangkok this year. The proportion of Bangkok residents planning to travel ‘upcountry' and abroad will rise. Last year, most of them preferred staying in Bangkok, taking day-trips or visiting provincial hometowns.
Spending by Bangkok residents during Songkran will include hometown visit costs of THB10.3 billion (36.1 percent of the total), entertainment and travel within Bangkok of THB6.5 billion (22.8 percent), as well as upcountry travel of THB6.0 billion (21.1 percent) and travel abroad of THB5.7 billion (20 percent).