Following an increase in ridership partly due to the 2017 Universiade, the Taipei Department of Information and Tourism announced that it will add Thai language audio guides to the Taipei Sightseeing buses, UDN reported.
According to statistics, the double-decker sightseeing bus, which began service on January 18, 2017, sold 13,000 tickets in August. More than 60% of riders were non-Taiwanese. The buses only saw 35,000 riders in the first four months of operation.
More visitors are discovering the double-decker sightseeing bus, especially after reading online recommendations on sights such as TripAdvisor. The service is highly recommended among tourists from Thailand and Singapore. Some are even recommending Taipei residents to give it a try.
One rider praised the sightseeing bus, saying, “This is the second trip to Taipei on the double-decker tour bus….A four-hour ticket is not enough!”
Visitors and residents can check out the Taipei Sightseeing Bus routes and information as well as purchase tickets on the company’s official website.
With the increase in tourists from South and Southeast Asia because of relaxed entry into Taiwan as part of the New Southbound Policy, tourist services have been adapting to better serve visitors from those countries. Taiwan began a visa waiver program for Thai tourists on August 1, 2016.
The announcement to add Thai audio guides comes after Thailand made no announcement of whether it would extend the visa fee waiver to Taiwanese tourists, which expired on August 31. Despite the visa fee waiver, Taiwanese tourists to Thailand declined 6% year-on-year in the first half of 2017.