The Development of Thailand Tourism Information Services Model
The research aims to (1) study the status of tourist information services in Thailand; (2) identify the best practice of tourist information services in Thailand and abroad; (3) identify the success factors of Thailand tourist information services; and (4) develop a model for Thailand tourist information services. This study employed mixed methods research. The population consisted of 396 tourists, selected randomly from 6 provinces that had the highest number of visitors and revenue from 2011-2015: Bangkok, Chonburi, Karnchanburi, Phuket, Chiangmai and Nakorn Ratchasima, 18 managers and staff from a total of 6 tourism organizations within the Tourism Authority of Thailand and Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation. The instruments were questionnaires and semi-structure interviews. Quantitative data analysis consisted of percentage, mean, and standard deviation, and content analysis was used for qualitative data analysis.
The key findings of the study were that (1) the status of Thailand tourist information services were primarily face-to-face information service such as enquiry services, routes, maps, online information retrieval services and special information services including, tourist information for entrepreneurs, selective dissemination of tourist information and document delivery. There was an integration of knowledge and sharing information with government organizations, private sector and local communities. (2) The best practice of tourist information services in Thailand and abroad were Human Resources and Service Provision. (3) The success factors of Thailand tourist information services were tailored information for specific groups, information technology infrastructure, budget for manpower, management leadership and stakeholder collaboration. (4) The suitable Thailand tourist information service model was SI-IS. SI consisted of Sharing (S) resources and integrated knowledge of tourist organizations staff and local communities and Information (I), or specific information, was the core of tourist information service. Information Systems (IS) were tourist information systems consisting of a smart tourism system, a link one-to-stop information service and “i” tourist information standard throughout Thailand.
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