The new practices were initiated in response to the government’s policy to drive community-based and sustainable tourism.
Nalikatibhag Sangsanit, director-general of DASTA, said the organisation had cooperated with the Thammasat University Research and Consultancy Institute (TU-RAC) to conduct research on the multiplier effects of community tourism. The study covered six areas, under supervision of DASTA: Koh Chang in Trat province, Pattaya, Sukhothai, Loei, Nan and Suphan Buri.
The study found that the six areas were able to increase income if they followed key strategies and management methods suggested by DASTA, such as attracting development, applying a customer-base approach to services, and cooperation among stakeholders in each community.
“The result was that the six communities increased their incomes after using DASTA’s management guidelines,” Nalikatibhag said. Moreover, tourism-based employment increased.
“DASTA was established to developed attractions and push quality tourism,” he said, adding that it would continue to pursue those goals this year.
DASTA aims to see its guidelines implemented in at least eight clusters nationwide, in 41 provinces. The eight clusters are being planned by the National Tourism Committee.
To expand the effectiveness of the guidelines and help increase tourism income at other communities, DASTA will introduce its practices to more areas while promoting community tourism in more parts of the country.