Japan started a visa exemption program for Thais a few years ago, which successfully created a huge tourism boom. Japan is an ideal destination for Thais that have the money to go on vacation, because although their cultural relevance has been overshadowed by Korea in many sectors here (cosmetics, home electronics, music, tv series, etc.), their image remains strong in others (cars, high end cosmetics, top name electronics, food, manga, etc.), and was much stronger before.
In addition, Japan is perceived as a more friendly and alluring place to visit because of the language (which many Thais can speak a few words of), the food (local versions of which are widely available in Thailand), and the people (who are viewed as a bit stiff, but polite and helpful/friendly). That said, Japanglish is unique and can sound ridiculous, even to the Japanese themselves.
This is a great vid (thx Mark!).
Here’s an alt that will probably be used by my wife’s Japanese section at the uni for a performance at some point in the future, lol: