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Phuket TAT chief strikes back at low tourism numbers claims

Phuket TAT chief strikes back at low tourism numbers claims

PHUKET: Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Phuket Office Director Kanokkittika Kritwutikon has struck out at claims online that Phuket is suffering an incredibly low number of visitors during the current tourism ‘high season’.

By The Phuket News

Wednesday 19 December 2018, 01:53PM

In a message issued via the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department yesterday (Dec 18), Ms Kanokkittika admitted that the number of Chinese tourists visiting Phuket so far this month has dropped by 2.63% compared with the same period last year, but also pointed out that the fall in Chinese arrivals had been offset by a 3.63% increase in the number of arrivals from other source markets.

“I cannot agree that the number of tourists in Phuket has fallen,” she said. “I know the number of Chinese tourists has dropped, as confirmed by Phuket Immigration. They have recorded 130,221 Chinese-national arrivals (at Phuket International Airport) from Dec 1-15.

“That is a decrease of 3,516 people compared with the same period last year, but that has not caused a huge fall in the number of tourists.

“There have also been 355,429 arrivals of other nationalities (during the same period), which is an increase of 3.63%,” she added.

Ms Kanokkittika noted that room bookings from group tours in Phuket had seen a fall of 5% due to cancellations, and a corresponding fall of 5% (down to about 3,000 a day) in the number of tourists boarding tour boats at Rassada Pier, the main departure point for tours to the islands in Phang Nga Bay, including Phi Phi Island.

However, she added, “We have certainly found that we have more FITs (free, independent travellers) travelling here. Hotel occupancy right now across all nationalities 71.77%, which is a 0.1% increase on last year.”

According to figures cited by Ms Kanokkittika, 14.75% of tourists to Phuket during the first two weeks of December were Thai, with the remaining 85.25% comprising foreigners.

“The average spending was B8,2110.80 per person per day, generating an estimated B40.39 billion per day. Hotel occupancy in beach areas is 84.78%,” she said.

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Timothy | 23 December 2018 - 09:27:42

"Silly TAT". At least you got that right. Nothing they report has ever made any sense. Wasn't that long ago they reported that there was no prostitution in Pattaya, and it was now a "world-class family destination". Doesn't seem to matter how ridiculous the statement, if it comes from any Thai agency, a few gullible people on this site will blindly defend this crap. 

Pauly44 | 22 December 2018 - 06:49:20

The data is inaccurate, many visitors are transiting, I for one have noticed a huge drop in actual tourists, TAT always exaggerates to make them & Thailand look better, anyone who believes what they say is an utter moron. 

ematt | 21 December 2018 - 13:11:42

Silly TAT relying on actual data. They should consult Phuket News posters instead!  They are the real experts!

CaptainJack69 | 20 December 2018 - 12:52:40

I could almost have believed this nonsense until the bit about hotel occupancies.  If EVERY hotel on Phuket is 71.77% full we'd need wider pavements to accommodate all the people.

Why do they think people would make these stories up? Who benefits from 'pretending' business is really bad? No one. The truth is that business IS really bad.

Shwe | 20 December 2018 - 11:55:19

Just take a walk along Bangtao beach, very few people, the illegal bars and restaurants are suffering as are all other restaurants in the area

Rorri_2 | 20 December 2018 - 10:34:11

Fascinated, Kurt may have meant tourists like the deck chairs, having them removed could be one nail, in the coffin, as to why many tourists don't come back, anyway, not all chairs/umbrellas were removed, remember the "10%" rule. 

THAI SMILE HOLIDAY | 20 December 2018 - 08:50:42

Beacuse of reason lack of visa issue problem some courruption in Bangladesh employ in working Thai Embassy in Bangladesh bad employes are work at Embassy of Thailand in Bangladesh evmbassy give 300-500 vistior can get visa of Thailand. everday arounf 5000-7000 aplliceant submission tourist visa want go Thailand But embassy in Bangladesh reject  visa without reason now Thailand visaas like dimond..

Galong | 20 December 2018 - 07:44:10

Here's a wild idea: instead of trying to get tacky mass tourism tourists to visit the Land of Smiles, why not focus on actual quality tourists and just charge more money. It would be worth if it Thailand was properly managed, maintained, clean, and professional. Nah, that's take more work, so go for the big Chinese groups, nevermind.

Doneit | 20 December 2018 - 00:40:47

Where do they get these figures from? The place is like a ghost town.

Fascinated | 19 December 2018 - 22:38:35

Errr- Insp K the beach chairs were removed by the authorities. You really do exist in a parallel universe don't you.

Nasa12 | 19 December 2018 - 19:14:59

Believe that TAT gets money from the Government after how many tourists are registered in to Thailand, a lot of false news from TAT.

zib | 19 December 2018 - 18:16:09

There's about 20 speed boats for sale in Rawai all parked together on land. Not down...plz :D

Kurt | 19 December 2018 - 15:28:20

TAT Chief strikes back? Wow. Who is interested in inaccurate TAT tourist number bookkeeping and pep talk. Fact is Phuket is in decline as tourist destination. Remember the 5 rows deep deck chairs at all beaches? Now here and there a towel with a tourist for a short while. ( to long is to hot). Anyone not laughing about that 0.1% increase? Clowns, fully dressed up for fake news and pep talks.!

Discover Thainess | 19 December 2018 - 14:42:13

If you say it enough times then it must be true !

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