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More and more Indian couples are going overseas for wedding ceremonies. Thailand has an extremely good image in India as the perfect place for destination weddings. It also received the “Best Wedding Destination” award conducted by Travel & Leisure India & South Asia magazine for four consecutive years (2011-2014).
Indian weddings can last for several days and that means big business for the tourism sector. At least 300 Indian wedding took place in Thailand last year. Each one lasts for minimum of 3 days and costs average of $145,000.
Thailand is forecasting a huge growth in the number of Indian weddings and honeymoons following an annual familiarization trip in March organized for wedding planners from major Indian cities, says the Tourism Authority of Thailand. Indian wedding planners find that Thailand is perfect for the growing number of destination weddings thanks to airline accessibility, great Thai hospitality, affordability of luxury, strong cultural connections. Thailand’s 150,000 strong Indian community gives the country an advantage. They know how to cater to Indian guests.
While India is a major market, only 50 percent of the Indian weddings that come to Thailand are actually from India.
The rest are Indian nationals from Dubai, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, the US, Europe and South Africa.
There were 90 Indians with a combined net worth of US$295 billion ranked in last year’s Forbes Billionaires List, meaning the country has the world’s third-highest number of billionaires, behind the US and China.
In organizing large-scale weddings, hosts usually need to book more than one hotel to accommodate their guests. Last year, for instance, a wedding was held in Chiang Mai with 700 attendants booked at four hotels. This brings direct and indirect benefits to the tourism industry during the course of five to seven days: men go to golf, women go to high-end shops, children go to amusement parks. (Floro Mercene)