The protest, led by Andaman Tour Guides Association President Krit Thepbumrung, called for the government to take steps to stem the problem of illegal tour guides working in the area.
Mr Krich explained that the letter of complaint alleges that foreign guides are not a new problem to Phuket and the surrounding tourism provinces.
“The tour guides here at the protest today all have a legal license and have had trouble from foreigners working as illegal tour guides,” he said.
“The problems include that strict rules and regulations are applied only to Thai guides who have been trained by the Tourism Department,” Mr Krich explained.
“They all have legitimate cards (are formally registered),” he said.
Mr Krich noted by example that legitimate, trained and legally registered tour guides must even know wildlife and plant species in order to perform as a genuine guide when leading tourists through national parks.
In contrast, illegal guides do not undergo any such training and are not required to pass any tests, but yet are still being hired by companies to work as illegal tour guides, he noted.
Mr Kritch specifically noted that illegal guides were even seen openly holding signs to pick up tourists at Phuket International Airport, with no consequences.
“This is why the Andaman Tour Guides Association gathered together and submitted a request to Phuket Provincial Hall today,” he said.
Present in person to receive the complaint, V/Gov Thanyawat said, “I will pass this request toi the relevant officials so they can proceed with the request further.”