Connect with us

Opinion

Phuket Opinion: Marketing failing airport bus service

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

image
image

PHUKET: The operators of the airport bus service linking Phuket International Airport with Patong need to improve their marketing approach as quickly as possible if they hope to turn around the service’s slow start before the high season draws to a close.

It came as somewhat of a surprise that the service, launched with considerable fanfare in July last year, has not turned out to be as popular as expected, especially given the widespread dissatisfaction with the woeful public transport options on the island.

Unfortunately, and despite perhaps legitimate claims by the operator that Airports of Thailand (AoT) and other forces with vested interests at the airport are largely to blame, the sad fact remains that nine months after starting, the service still has no discernible English-language presence on the internet to inform would-be riders that it even exists.

After complaints last year that the information on the website was only in Thai, the owner promised to add English during a revamping of the site due to be completed in October. A recent web search yielded discouraging results.

The domain name that had been clearly shown on the side of buses [phuketairportbusexpress.com] yielded a “No Result” message. Subsequent research in Thai for contact information turned up two telephone numbers, for a landline and a mobile. Several attempts to reach both over the course of a weekday morning proved fruitless: both numbers worked, but nobody picked up the phone – making information about the service unavailable to any and all callers, regardless of what language they speak.

The airport express bus operators could take a page out of the playbook of the bus that links the airport with Phuket Town. That service also had problems gaining traction after their launch in 2005, but now seems to have emerged as a fairly reliable and legitimate transport option.

Not surprisingly, that service has an informative website and staff who are typically ready to provide additional information over the phone.

The express bus operators need to put themselves in the shoes of their target market. For many, the first impulse will be to fire up a smart phone and try to get basic information about how to reach their final destination quickly, safely and at a reasonable cost. When such information is nowhere to be found, they will need to settle for what appears to be the next best alternative, given the information at hand.

The airport express bus operators need to address marketing as a top priority, both for their own future success and also to help turn the tide in Phuket’s battle to free itself from being known as a “tourist trap” destination.

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

World5 hours ago

Foreign Ministers of China and Malaysia agree over South China Sea

Bangkok7 hours ago

Burmese woman rescued by DSI after 13 years of forced labor

Protests7 hours ago

Burmese junta drives car into protesters killing 5, injuring dozens

advertiseadvertise
Chon Buri9 hours ago

4 Bang Saen restaurants busted selling alcohol outside Chon Buri Blue Zone

Politics10 hours ago

Woman who told PM Prayut to “retire quickly” claims police visited her

Transport12 hours ago

Boeing’s Max 737 returns to Chinese skies

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)12 hours ago

COVID-19 SUNDAY: 4,704 infections, 27 deaths, provincial totals

Coronavirus (Covid-19)13 hours ago

Omicron variant and surging Covid-19 affect European nations

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 hours ago

Australia, Asia, and Africa deal with the Covid-19 Omicron variant

Thailand14 hours ago

HM The King returns to Thailand for Father’s Day commemorations

Coronavirus (Covid-19)16 hours ago

Omicron spreads to 38 countries, 10 US states; Remdesivir recalled

Transport17 hours ago

Hua Lamphong “won’t be torn down” | VIDEO

North East17 hours ago

Penis park in Khon Kaen is urging visitors to hug a member

Food18 hours ago

Vegan and vegetarian restaurants in Bangkok | VIDEO

Tourism18 hours ago

Maya Bay on hold, but preparations for an eventual reopening continue | VIDEOS

Coronavirus World5 days ago

Health officials say Omicron probably in the Netherlands prior to South Africa reports

Coronavirus (Covid-19)5 days ago

PM will decide on need for lockdown if and when Omicron found in Thailand

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 days ago

UPDATE: What we know about “Omicron,” new travel restrictions to Thailand

Coronavirus (Covid-19)5 days ago

PM Prayut Chan-o-cha says PCR tests will remain a requirement for foreign arrivals

Thailand6 days ago

Thailand News Today | Quarantine requirements in Thailand relaxed, Vocal expat deported | Nov 29

Tourism6 days ago

No plans to reverse re-opening, despite Omicron variant – Tourism Ministry

Road deaths7 days ago

Thai man dies by flurry of bullets while going to get 2nd Covid shot

Drugs5 days ago

Men arrested at Bangkok airport for allegedly smuggling drugs valued at 95 million baht

Thailand5 days ago

Possible lockdown, Crypto in Thailand, Transit system improvements | Good Morning Thailand | Ep.143

Visa2 days ago

10-year long term visa scheme takes a step forward, measures approved by PM

Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 days ago

Thailand entry restrictions on African countries in response to Omicron

Bangkok6 days ago

Foreigner claims Bangkok taxi pocketed 1,000 baht for ride down Sukhumvit

Tourism5 days ago

Cha-am permitted to sell alcohol in restaurants from December 1

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 days ago

Omicron Covid-19 variant isn’t in Thailand, DDC director says

Tourism6 days ago

Tourism officials welcome Czech movie filming in Phuket and Krabi

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism10 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism10 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending