Speaking to The Phuket News today, Uthit Limsakul, Deputy Director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Phuket office, declined to estimate how much revenue the Golden Week visitors generated in Phuket during the eight-day holidays
However, he did intimate that most of the Chinese travellers to Phuket over the past week are believed to have been Free Independent Traveller (FITs).
“Most of the Chinese tourists’ travel budgets during the past week were spent on accommodation, with the tourists choosing to stay at four or five-star hotels or pool villas and pool villa estates. The average occupancy rate during the Golden Week was about 80%,” Mr Uthit said.
Tourism & Sports Ministry Permanent Secretary Pongpanu Svetarundra announced last week that the ministry forecasts that about 260,000 Chinese tourists would visit Thailand during the Golden Week, up 35% from the same period last year.
According to the Ministry of Tourism & Sports, the Chinese tourists were likely spend their holidays in Bangkok, Pattaya, Phuket, Chiang Mai and Samui, generating revenue of over B11 billion for the country. (See story here.)
For Phuket, Mr Uthit noted, “Most of the tourists also spent time on trips in Phang Nga and on Phang Nga Bay, and to Racha Island [south of Phuket].
“Their main activities were shopping, eating and enjoying massages,” he noted.
“Also, Chinese tourists were not the only ones visiting Phuket during the past week. We also saw an influx Russian and Australians among the top source markets,” Mr Uthit said.
Meanwhile Rawai Municipality welcomed more than 90 Chinese couples on honeymoon to Phromthep Cape this morning (Oct 9).
The event included a formal welcome by Rawai Mayor Aroon Solos with cultural performances featuring Thai drums and traditional dancing.
“We welcome and support Thai-Chinese tourism, and to promote important tourism destinations in Phuket and elsewhere in Thailand,” Mayor Aroon said.