Phuket’s tourism boom: Is the island ready for the rush?

Photo courtesy of Bangkok Post

The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) is confident that tourism revenue in Phuket this year will skyrocket to a staggering 400 billion baht.

In a surprising revelation, the provincial TAT office reported that more than 3.6 million tourists graced the resort island in the first quarter alone.

Lerdchai Wangtrakoondee, director of the provincial TAT office, announced yesterday that tourist numbers from January to March surged by an impressive 30% compared to the same period last year. Revenue from tourism hit an all-time high of 137 billion baht in the first quarter, marking a significant improvement from last year’s figures.

Although Phuket is transitioning into its off-peak season, Lerdchai highlighted that hotel reservations on the island have not seen a drastic drop. Local business operators are optimistic, referring to this time of the year as the green season rather than the low season.

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Typically, during the high tourism season, Phuket Airport welcomes over 20,000 tourists daily, but the number usually dips during this period. Currently, the average number of foreign tourists arriving via direct flights stands at 10,000 per day, a notable increase from the past low season average of about 6,000.

Phuket boasts the highest number of hotel rooms in Thailand, with a staggering 101,000. While the occupancy rate has declined slightly from 86% in March to 70% in May, it remains robust. Hotel operators in popular areas such as Patong, Kata, Karon, and Phuket City report that their revenues have not dropped significantly. This is partly due to a 30% hike in room prices compared to last year.

Last year, 11 million tourists visited Phuket, generating 388 billion baht in revenue. Interestingly, the majority of business operators are not eager for this year’s tourist numbers to exceed 11 million, citing potential traffic congestion and overcrowding in tourist hotspots, reported Bangkok Post.

However, thanks to special local TAT promotions, they remain confident that revenue will surpass the 400 billion baht mark, proving that Phuket is more than ready to welcome the world.

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Alex Morgan

Alex is a 42-year-old former corporate executive and business consultant with a degree in business administration. Boasting over 15 years of experience working in various industries, including technology, finance, and marketing, Alex has acquired in-depth knowledge about business strategies, management principles, and market trends. In recent years, Alex has transitioned into writing business articles and providing expert commentary on business-related issues. Fluent in English and proficient in data analysis, Alex strives to deliver well-researched and insightful content to readers, combining practical experience with a keen analytical eye to offer valuable perspectives on the ever-evolving business landscape.

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