Coronavirus (Covid-19)Phang NgaTourism

Tourism recovery in Phang Nga still sluggish

PHOTO: Flickr/Shark Attacks

Thailand may have re-opened but there’s little sign yet of any significant recovery in the southern province of Phang Nga. The Bangkok Post reports that most businesses in the tourist area of Khao Lak are still suffering. Despite the coastal resort being open for over 3 weeks now, there are only a handful of tourists in the region.

Chayabol Hirankanokkul from the Phang Nga Tourism Association is optimistic things will pick up in early 2022, based on the number of rooms booked. He adds that around 50% of hotel rooms have already been booked for next month. He says tour operators in the area are willing to comply with disease prevention measures laid down by the Public Health Ministry, including having SHA Plus accreditation, and local businesses are ready to welcome back tourists.

Chayabol says the Ministry of Tourism and Sports has helped the Phang Nga Tourism Association to train businesses, local drivers, and tour operators on how to become SHA accredited, to ensure foreign tourists feel safe.

“All hospitality staff have already received full vaccine doses, including a third jab. They are the first priority to get the vaccine. We are confident the tourism business can live together with the disease so there is no need to shut down the country again.”

Meanwhile, Sathit Pitutecha from the Health Ministry says Thailand’s vaccination programme, coupled with disease prevention measures, means daily new infections are being kept low. He’s confident tourist numbers will pick up for the end of year holiday period and during Songkran 2022.

“If everything goes well with the plan, we will see more tourists who want to celebrate their life during New Year and even the Songkran festival in Thailand. We hope that next year we can resume the country’s signature water festival if there are no more big clusters.”

Before Covid-19, Phang Nga tourism generated around 54 billion baht a year in revenue, which dropped to 30 million baht during the pandemic.

For more information on how to get into Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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