Myanmar tourism expects more visitors with stabilising prices

FOLLOWING dramatic price increases in Myanmar’s tourism industry in recent years, industry players say rates are stabilising in line with growing supply and as more tourists to South-east Asia seek value for money.

Richard Ludwig, product manager, Exo Travel Myanmar, told TTG Asia e-Daily: “Each of the previous three years has presented drastic changes in pricing for Myanmar’s tourism industry and it was not uncommon for hotels to reissue contracts with 50-100 percent rate increase.
“For 2014/15 and beyond we have seen a reduction in hotel rates, small decreases in transport and stable flight fares.”

As Myanmar attracted record numbers of visitors in recent years and quality infrastructure remained in short supply, many components, in particular hotel rooms, saw a monumental surge in price. Many visitors were unaffected by the rapid price increase, although Ludwig said that the trend is changing.

“Now we are seeing cost-conscious leisure travellers who will compare trips with (other) South-east Asia destinations. Myanmar is still more expensive than Vietnam or Thailand but gains have been made to make it a competitive destination,” he said.

Journeys Adventure Travel general manager, Lee Sheridan, agreed that prices have begun to stabilise this season and that “we are no longer seeing the dramatic price hikes of previous years often accompanied by little or no increase in quality”.

“However, Myanmar is still a very expensive destination compared to the region, which is making it difficult to attract returning visitors. Myanmar has plenty to offer, but I see high prices being a significant deterrence to faster growth in the repeat-visitor market,” he said.

Source: TTG Asia

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