Laos has officially launched its “Visit Laos Year 2024” campaign, expecting to attract millions of international visitors to the Southeast Asian country, which has been touted as a “paradise of culture, nature, and history.” The initiative will boast some 79 cultural events for visitors to enjoy, led by a strategic multi-platform digital campaign.
Among the lineup of national events to showcase the country’s rich cultural heritage are the Lao New Year Festival, Hmong New Year, That Luang Festival, and Wat Phou Festival.
Visitors have the opportunity to sample the country’s diverse cultural tapestry through provincial festivals, such as the Bolaven Coffee-Tea Festival in Champasak Province, the Ethnic Festival and Cultural Market Fair in Bokeo Province, “Oh Luang Prabang You are Simply Beautiful 2” in Luang Prabang, and many more.
Director General of the Tourism Marketing Department, Khom Douangchantha, expressed confidence that the Visit Laos 2024 campaign will stand out on the global stage.
“While hosting several high-profile events, this tourism campaign holds significant importance as a crucial step towards revitalizing our economy and boosting the tourism industry,” Mr. Khom Douangchantha said.
“Embodying the essence of the well-known Lao phrase ‘Sabai Sabai,’ which encourages visitors to feel comfortable and take it easy, this campaign extends a warm invitation to all travelers to make themselves at home as they explore our cultural, natural, and historical paradise,” he added.
Setting an ambitious goal for the tourism industry, the Lao government aims to attract over 2.7 million international tourists in 2024, hoping to generate over USD 400 million in revenue, and welcome a projected 2.9 million visitors in 2025.
At a launch ceremony held at Vientiane Capital’s That Luang Esplanade, Suanesavanh Vignaket, Lao Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, said that tourism plays a key role in Laos’ economy and growth. In 2022, the service sector was the fastest-growing in the country, accounting for 37 percent of Laos’ GDP.
To ensure success, the Lao government is pulling out all the stops, with plans underway to enhance infrastructure, diversify tourism products, and elevate service quality. A focal point of these efforts is the promotion of Visit Laos Year 2024 through various media channels and international tourism exhibitions.
Aligned with the ASEAN Framework on Sustainable Tourism Development in the Post-COVID-19 Era, Laos is gearing up to attract international tourists by championing eco-friendly and sustainable practices. The initiative not only seeks to enhance the country’s global appeal but also aims to create job opportunities and generate income for local communities.
In addition to the Visit Laos Year festivities, Laos is set to assume the ASEAN chairmanship at the beginning of January 2024. This will see a series of significant events, including the 44th and 45th ASEAN Summits, the ASEAN Tourism Forum, and various other ASEAN-related meetings. The country anticipates these events will further elevate its status as a prime destination, drawing in more visitors and fostering international collaboration.