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Phuket Opinion: In support of sane solutions

PHUKET: The Phuket City Development Co Ltd (PKCD) will this month be rolling out its Airport to Rawai bus service which will transport tourists and residents between Phuket’s popular west coast tourist towns and the Phuket International Airport.

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By The Phuket News

Sunday 11 February 2018, 09:00AM


Let’s hope this latest attempt to deliver reasonably priced public transport to Phuket’s west coast tourist towns succeeds and leads the way for the rest of the island. Photo: Shela Riva

Let’s hope this latest attempt to deliver reasonably priced public transport to Phuket’s west coast tourist towns succeeds and leads the way for the rest of the island. Photo: Shela Riva

The Phuket News wholeheartedly supports this game-changing endeavour and congratulates the PKCD for their willingness to push ahead with the project despite the risk of backlash from the island’s notoriously monopolistic and protectionist taxi industry.

This could be the watershed moment which will forever change the island’s woefully inadequate public transport infrastructure for the better and help break the tuk-tuk and taxi mafia’s stranglehold on the island’s public transport sector – particularly in the tourist hotspots on Phuket’s west coast.

PKCD Executive Director Watchara Jaru-ariyanon told The Phuket News in an interview that Governor Norraphat Plodthong, along with other key government officials will be in attendance when the service is launched on Feb 28.

The Phuket News calls on those officials to not merely spout platitudes about improving public transport and grab self-promotional photo opportunities, but to publicly commit to ensuring that this new bus service can be conducted free from threats or interference from those with vested interests in seeing it fail. And if it is necessary for the police or army to escort the buses, should threats or actual violence emerge.

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We also call on all of our readers, tourists and locals alike, to use the service and spread the word on social media to show the tuk-tuk and taxi mafia that times are changing and they will have to begin pricing their services competitively if they wish to keep customers.

If this bus service is a success, it might also support the case for expanding a modern, reliable and affordable bus network across the whole island, rather than spending countless billions on a light rail project which so far lacks any evidence or research indicating that it will be an effective solution to the island’s transport woes.

No one expects this one initiative to instantly solve the entrenched problems with Phuket’s public transport, but we can do our best to support it in the hope that it will eventually serve as an example of what is possible when simple and logical solutions to problems are implemented and supported.

 

 

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sharp | 11 February 2018 - 13:57:27

Airport to Rawai...joke right!!! 
 Try Airport to Patong then I\'m seeing a change in the transport monopoly... 

Kurt | 11 February 2018 - 11:45:16

Again a great piece of Phuket News Opinion!.

When the busses start rolling, I definitely will support and make use of them along west coast instead of using my car.

Now I wait first for Governor's word of ride safety guarantee!

BosysurfNaiHarn | 11 February 2018 - 09:45:17

under this bus transportation program, what is the estimated time it would take to get from Rawai to the airport? What is the cost? How often would it run? What hours of operation? How late can somebody get from the airport back to Rawai? I would use it if time and cost are reasonable.

malczx7r | 11 February 2018 - 09:27:06

Here here, if this breaks the taxi tuk tuk mafia then it's a win for tourists and people who live here.

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