SATURDAY, April 20, 2024

Future business travel: From a frequent flyer's viewpoint

Future business travel: From a frequent flyer's viewpoint

Sanan Angubolkul is no stranger to business travel, especially in his role as chair of the Thai Chamber of Commerce (TCC) and host of the upcoming Apec CEO Summit.

This high-level business gathering will be held in conjunction with the approaching Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit.

“This is the first time in three years that this event is being hosted face-to-face. Apec 2022 is a great opportunity for the business sector and Thai people,” he said. “Thailand will not have a chance to host an event like this for another 20 years.”

Apec is a regional economic forum with 21 member economies established in 1989 to promote economic integration in a non-legally binding, friendly manner.

Next week, landing on Thai soil will be leaders not just from the 21 Apec economies, but also from Saudi Arabia, France and China.

Since diplomatic ties have been rekindled with Saudi Arabia, Thailand has welcomed more than 800 business travellers.

With Apec member economies accounting for more than 60% of the global GDP, the summit is attracting many key business leaders from different countries.

To accommodate them, the Thai business sector has teamed up to form the Apec Business Advisory Council (Abac).

This entity comprises TCC, the Federation of Thai Industries, and the Thai Bankers’ Association.

Sanan said the Thai private sector is playing a key role in supporting the Apec 2022 theme of “Open. Connect. Balance”.

“The subjects of trade, investment and doing business across borders will be discussed closely and everybody hopes all obstacles will be unlocked,” he said.

The meeting is also expected to help Thailand’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) learn from their Apec counterparts, so they can gain confidence and potential.

To help tap opportunities for Thailand’s SMEs, Abac has come up with five key issues to bring to the attention of world leaders, namely regional economic integration; digital infrastructure; sustainable practices of micro-entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized enterprises; sustainability; and finance and economics.

“Thailand is strong in the agricultural sector, especially when it comes to food security. This is a factor that we need to highlight and explain to western countries. We want to show them that Thailand is ready for the future,” Sanan said.

He also pointed out that as the host of Apec 2022, Thailand will earn invaluable experience that will have a greater impact in the long run.

Future business travel: From a frequent flyer\'s viewpoint

“Each country’s leader will come with their own media representative and businesspeople. These people in turn will bring their families and friends to visit Thailand,” Sanan said.

“Though the meeting will only last for two days, many business leaders have arrived several days ahead.”

This, he said, was not surprising because Thailand is known globally for its hospitality and ability to cater to all kinds of visitors.

“I believe anybody coming to Thailand, falls in love with it,” he said.

To support businesspeople arriving in Thailand for Apec 2022, TCC and its business alliances have also selected young entrepreneurs to offer them a helping hand.

This will also give young businesspeople a global perspective and experience in working with executives from other nations, much like the “Young President Organisation” that was held several years ago, he said.

Future business travel: From a frequent flyer\'s viewpoint

“Business travellers need things to be easy and services that go ‘beyond expectation’. I’ve travelled a lot and if I land at 1am, I don’t want to bother my driver. I would rather have a special service that is ready and waiting for use,” he said.

Business travellers also value the option of skipping lengthy immigration queues and going for the “quick lane” when they visit a country.

Sanan Angubolkul, Chairman of the Thai Chamber of Commerce

For Apec 2022, Thailand has set up fast immigration lanes for official attendees. This service is also available for holders of the Apec business card, Sanan said.

He added that getting a VIP business card is always a wise decision, because businesspeople require easy access to excellent services, such as a personal assistant who can meet their needs.

Introducing the ABTC Privilege Card

The Apec Business Travel Card (ABTC) has been specially created to provide superior privileges to business owners of every level.

The card is operated by World Reward Solutions (WRS Group), a leading provider of services for wealthy and VVIP customer organisations and individuals.

ABTC is already offering special privileges and benefits to Thai businesspeople.

Future business travel: From a frequent flyer\'s viewpoint

What’s on offer

The holder of the ABTC Privilege Card will be eligible for benefits at participating destinations and stores. It cannot be used as a substitute for cash and cannot be used in place of the Apec Business Travel Card (ABTC).

The card will have 1-year validity from the date the application fee has been paid.

The ABTC Privilege Card comes in three categories:

• Apec Prestige Ultimate (Black): This top-level card has an annual membership fee of 60,000 baht

• Apec Prestige Premier (Red): This mid-level costs 20,000 baht per year

• Apec Prestige Explorer (Blue): This first-tier card is free

To enjoy business travel and lifestyle exquisite privileges please apply for ABTC Privilege Card by simply clicking through or call to 02-113-4838

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