BANGKOK — Dear Thai tourists, we miss you a lot.
That’s the message of a social media initiative launched by the Japanese tourism agency on Tuesday to remind Thai travelers that Japan yearns for their return when international travel is possible again.
Under a campaign called “Missing Japan,” the Japan National Tourism Organization posted photos of workers at popular attractions holding up signs asking Thai tourists to return to the Land of the Rising Sun after the coronavirus pandemic is over.
Featured photos include a ninja at Matsue Castle, a JR West train operator, the oiran courtesan at Edo Wonderland, and the famed mascot Kumamon.
“Thanks to all the Thais who are missing Japan travel. We’re so encouraged by your words of ‘I want to go to Japan’ and ‘missing Japan,” the tourism website said. “Our ‘Missing Japan’ campaign will help you plan your future trips. When you can travel here again safely, we are waiting to welcome you back.”
JNTO’s Thai office said in a media report that more than 1 million Thais visited Japan in the first 10 months of 2019 alone, contributing 140 billion yen to the Japanese economy.
Thais make up the sixth largest group of visitors to the island nation, with Chinese, South Korean, Taiwanese, Hong Kong, and American tourists topping the first five spots.