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Phuket Airport calls for ‘understanding’ as terminal renovations cause major delays

Phuket Airport calls for ‘understanding’ as terminal renovations cause major delays

PHUKET: Officials at Phuket International Airport have repeated their call for “understanding” as renovations of the old Domestic Terminal cause major upheavals for passengers arriving and departing the island via the airport.

By The Phuket News

Monday 7 November 2016, 07:15PM

The notice issued today advised that drivers can circle through the ‘drop-off zone’ every 15 minutes. Photo: The Phuket News

The notice issued today advised that drivers can circle through the ‘drop-off zone’ every 15 minutes. Photo: The Phuket News

“We apologise for any inconvenience during the renovations,” Airports of Thailand (AoT) Phuket noted in a release issued today (Nov 7).

“We are working to improve the building to accommodate the increasing number of passengers at the airport for the high season,” it added.

“We have officers posted to direct travellers to the correct areas where they need to go and we have signs posted through the terminal. We have also added extra seating in a new waiting area to make it more convenient for passengers needing to wait for the flights.

“We recommend passengers arrive at least two hours before they need to check in (sic) for their flights,” the notice advised.

“We are also taking steps to alleviate traffic jams at the entrance to the terminal,” the notice added.

The official AoT Phuket Facebook page this morning advised people arriving at the airport to access the new International Terminal to park near “Door 5” on Level 1 or “Door 3” on Level 3 of the five-story car park.

People looking to drop off passengers at the Domestic Terminal, however, were told that vehcles could circle through the drop-off zone every 15 minutes.

QSI International School Phuket

The repeated call for “understanding” follows a slew of complaints from people using the airport since the renovations began last Tuesday (Nov 1).

“I just dropped and pick up guests at the domestic terminal, I understand that they have to work but the person or the AoT who organised the temporary domestic terminal is a shame for Thailand and Phuket and we are just at the start of the season,” one local expat reported to The Phuket News.

“I invite you to go to have a look... it is unbelievable to be able to make such a mess. There are already taxis who do not want to pick up guests as there is a unnecessary procedure at the International Terminal, but the mess at the domestic one is tops.

“I don’t know how we will find our guests when more arrive the coming weeks,” he said.

The notice today pointed out that AoT had already notified the public through press releases and through social media, in line with Airport Director Monrudee Gettuphan announcing the renovations at a special press conference on Oct 29. (See story here.)

However, instead of the 330 days allocated for the contractors to complete their work, the notice today explained that the project will take 406 days – 256 days to complete Phase 1 (to close Levels 1, 2 and 3 on the south side of the terminal for renovations); and 150 days to complete Phase 2 (to close Levels 1, 2and 3 on the north side to improve all airport systems).

Meanwhile, AoT has also called for people to abide by the annual ban on all fire lanterns anywhere near the airport during the Loy Krathong festival, which will be held next Monday (Nov 14).

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Rorii | 11 November 2016 - 18:08:25

swerv, well first, we are still waiting on why the stuff up, at immigration, secondly, I\'m sure he could as the airport management why renovations could not be postponed, or perhaps he's just not interested what happens to tourists.

swerv | 11 November 2016 - 08:48:56

Andy: As i have stated many times, Joe12 and i are not the same. I have no idea who Joe12 is other than he has the same viewpoint as me. Make a comment by all means, but make derogatory remarks about Thai people, Thailand and Phuket and you will find one or both of us responding.
If you read our comments you will note a different standard of writing. I deal with multi nationals on a daily basis s...

Rorii | 10 November 2016 - 16:15:55

Andy, I have long suspected that, to be the case, I also suspect an "attachment" to that ex editor, from that defunct Phuket blog site.
But now swerv has returned, from the jungle, with a clear head, maybe now he can explain, with help from his "friend", at the airport, why the stuff up, at immigration, and why the renovations, phase 1, could be done AFTER the coming hi season...

Andy | 10 November 2016 - 13:48:19

Maybe swerve and Joe12 are one and the same. 

swerv | 10 November 2016 - 07:51:56

Rorri: So pleased you missed me. I have been away in the Jungle for a week and made myself a promise not to read PN comments particularly from Kurt. Such a peaceful week. But now i am back with a clear head.

Rorii | 09 November 2016 - 13:28:10

Sadly, we do have an understanding, we understand the airport officials are incompetent.

Swerv, you've gone very quiet lately, this is not normal, come to think of it, so has Joe12. I guess the challenge to put up or shut up, has taken it's  toll.

Kurt | 08 November 2016 - 14:42:05

Without hesitation I say that Phuket International Airport will be a mess the coming 2 years.
Avoid Phuket International Airport as a first time coming tourist. You will be lost.
Lost at Immigration, lost coz your hotel representative can not find you, lost with finding a taxi, as many don't like to serve the airport now. ( and that says something)

Kurt | 08 November 2016 - 14:26:02

I really don't understand what kind of 'understanding' the Phuket International Airport officials expect from us, the customers.
The international terminal is not functioning according international standards.
Now, at start High tourist season, they start a large scale renovation, causing a enormous mess at Phuket airport.
Untrained, not english speaking sun glassed unfriendly mafia...

CaptainJack69 | 08 November 2016 - 11:45:28

Can anyone explain why they've closed the departures concourse AND most of the arrivals level at the same time?? Bonkers!  And why have they closed the existing domestic side of the terminal when what was the international side was already sitting vacant? and will remain untouched until "phase 2"?  

Maybe they've got the contractors from the SamKong underpass working on it, th...

peter rawai | 08 November 2016 - 10:43:01

Sounds like typical government organized infrastructure maintenance and repairs, expect it to take at least twice as long as they say it will as normal  

Rorii | 08 November 2016 - 06:16:43

Swerv, do us all a favour, ask your "friend" whyphase 1 renovations couldn't wait until AFTER hi season. Phase 2 could have been postponed until after next years hi season

eric dekegel | 07 November 2016 - 20:10:49

Nice to read that The Phuket News is the only newspaper who is reporting the real story.How is it possible to do this job in the high season?Why they not work 24h/day and started last year after songkran! Planning is not the AOT specialty, I was lucky this week to meet a friendly and polite airport officer who let us the time to find our guests and was understanding the mess.The private security s...

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