THAI Airways flight number TG 953 from Copenhagen landed at the international terminal of Phuket airport at 6:28am this morning to be greeted by a water tunnel and warm applause from the executive committee of Thai Airways International (THAI) and the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), together with representatives from the media.
The welcome committee included Non Klinta, Chief Commercial Officer Thai Airways International, Siripakorn Chiawsamut, Deputy Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand for Europe, Africa, Middle East and America markets, Kanyarat Suthipatanakit, Deputy Director of Phuket Airport Business Support Division and representatives of Phuket Airport Customs House.
Mr Non said the arrival of foreign travellers from Europe who have received the full dose of COVID-19 vaccination was a very important moment and a positive step in response to the government’s policy to stimulate and drive the economy under the Phuket Sandbox model.
He added that THAI has five scheduled flights from Europe per week arriving in Phuket throughout the July to September period – flights from Copenhagen, Frankfurt and Paris are scheduled to fly once a week every Friday and flights from London and Zurich will operate once a week every Saturday.
Additionally, the national airline will look to add further international flights to the schedule in the winter period of this year, Mr Non stated.
Following the Copenhagen flight that was the first to arrive this morning, flight TG923 from Frankfurt arrived at 6:52am and flight TG933 from Paris arrived at 8:33am.
Tomorrow, flight TG917 from London is scheduled to touch down at 6:10am Phuket time, closely followed by flight TG973 from Zurich at 7:45am.
THAI confirmed that the total number of passengers travelling across all five flights this weekend amounts to about 300 people.
Mr Non added that the total number of passengers booked on THAI flights throughout July is approximately 1300.
TAT Deputy Governor of European Marketing, Siripakorn Chiewsamut, said that tourists all around the world would now be looking towards Phuket. Assuming everything goes well and according to plan, he anticipates foreign arrivals to increase and align with the forecast made by the Minister of Tourism and Sports of 3-4 million tourists arriving on the island by the end of the year.