Arrivals countrywide totalled 5,334,000 compared with 4,660,000 in January to March 2010.
The biggest climbers, as noticed easily in Phuket, were the mainland Chinese and the Russians. The number of Chinese rose from 334,000 to 434,000, a boost of 30 per cent, while the boom in Russians was even more extreme, from 217,000 to 311,000, an increase of 43 per cent.
Malaysia continues to lead the pack, with 588,000 arrivals in the first three months of this year, compared with 513,000 last year, a rise of 14.5 per cent.
Traditional big markets Britain and Germany were more or less static, at 249,000 and 219,000 respectively, but the number of Swedes, after plunging in the past couple of years, has recovered to 205,000 this year, an increase of 23 per cent.