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Phuket sees 50% drop in Chinese tour groups arrivals

PHUKET: The number of Chinese tour groups arriving in Phuket is down by half over safety worries and serious efforts are needed to restore confidence and bring them back, the Phuket Tourism Association has warned.

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By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 3 October 2018, 05:53PM


Tour boats remain docked in Phuket as local tour operators urge the government to improve safety standards to woo back Chinese visitors. Photo: Bangkok Post / File

Tour boats remain docked in Phuket as local tour operators urge the government to improve safety standards to woo back Chinese visitors. Photo: Bangkok Post / File

Association president Phumkit Raktae-ngam said today (Oct 3) that the Phoenix boat disaster had a major impact on the feelings of Chinese people and had put them off visiting Phuket.

On July 5 the tour boat Phoenix capsized off Phuket during a storm and 47 Chinese tourists drowned.

“About 50% of the tour groups are not making their normal arrivals. Chinese tourists have stopped visiting Phuket because they are worried about their safety,” Mr Phumkit said.

“The problem must be solved at its root cause. In the meantime, the salvage of the boat has made no progress.”

The government needed to increase human resources to ensure public safety and communicate better with Chinese visitors. Communications from the Chinese government might not effectively reach its people, he said.

New Paths Retreat

With increased guarantees of their safety, the vanished Chinese tour groups were likely to return within six months.

He added that the number of tourists from Europe, Russia, India and the Middle East visiting Phuket were rising.

For the vegetarian festival from Oct 9-17, the hotel occupancy rate was 65% in Phuket and 50% in downtown areas, Mr Phumkit said.

Read original story here.

 

 

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LES | 07 October 2018 - 01:14:24

Is it any surprise ? The Chinese tourists have been treated  as another method of ripping off tourists. The two price menu, one for locals and one for the Chinese in Phuket town etc is just one of many where they have been "taken".
Sadly some have lost their lives or been  involved in accidents its not surprising if they look elsewhere.

bojon | 04 October 2018 - 10:56:34

It must be extremely important to conclude who was or were responsible for taking th Phoenix out in dangerous waters. If it was the Chinese owner that should be told to the Chinese public, that their own peoples greed caused the horrible accident, if so.

Galong | 04 October 2018 - 09:45:14

@ Discover Thainess - yep, and add that the ocean is getting a bit of a reprieve as the seafood buffets all over Phuket Town currently don't have 15-20 double-decker buses unloading the improperly dresses rubes rushing in to cram as much seafood into their faces as humanly possible.  Phuket needs to target better tourists.

BenPendejo | 04 October 2018 - 09:31:30

Well...maybe the Chinese aren't as stupid as Thai officials think.  The Chinese have heard all the empty "guarantees of their safety" from all kinds of officials, but then they see the drownings and traffic deaths just keep happening, and realize that nothing is any different.  Add to it the crap customer service and rude treatment of the Chinese, and I can see why they are going els...

vegasbaby | 03 October 2018 - 19:41:54

It is good to see that at least one country is concerned about safety for their citizens, while Phuket officials still do not have a clue or a plan to fix many problems: sewage flowing into sea, unsafe and flooding roads, unsafe boat and buses, ripoff scams jet skis, taxis, lack of lifeguards and tourist police, lack of beach services for tourists and many more.  Good luck for the future.

Kurt | 03 October 2018 - 19:08:07

Chinese diplomats are angry and feel bad coz of the lies and false safety guarantees of Phuket Officials. They 'feel a loose face thing', something sure thai will understand. Now Chinese Officials warn their citizens not go unsafe Phuket. No safe boats ( explosions/fires), no safe busses (brakes), no safe minivans ( hitting constant concrete poles with sleeping drivers).

Discover Thainess | 03 October 2018 - 18:41:50

Marvellous news, traffic is actually moving again at the moment without all the buses charging around. I wonder if Road deaths are down as well this month - let’s hope they stay away forever. 

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