Fall in tourists “our own fault’ – Gov

PHUKET: Governor Pongpayome Vasaputi has blamed the falling number of tourists on Phuket’s poor attitude towards tourism. Speaking after the release of Phuket International Airport’s latest statistics on passenger throughput, he described Phuket as a “golden island that attracts fortune seekers”. But, he said, “Once all the gold has been dug up, it will just be an ordinary island.” The latest figures released by airport officials show that in April the number of passengers fell by 0.68% compared with the same month last year. The number of people arriving or departing on domestic flights rose only 0.76% to 215,459, while 114,056 people used the airport for international flights, representing a 3.3% decrease. “I thought that having fluctuating passenger numbers would be a good thing because it would put an end to people thinking that [the boom] would last forever. It would spur us to improve Phuket in order to attract more tourists,” the Governor said. “The falling number of tourists is our own fault. People have come from other provinces to profit from Phuket’s tourism. Some of these people have not conducted decent business or helped to keep Phuket clean. As a result, some tourists have been disappointed when they’ve come here,” he said. Pointing out that Phang Nga and Krabi provinces are also developing their tourism, he said he believes that Phuket, which has about 509 hotels and 26,000 rooms – may have too much accommodation. “The tourists are not stupid. If they want to take a holiday somewhere quiet, and Phuket cannot give them that, then they will go somewhere else. “I think this is normal for a tourist destination. When it booms, problems such as garbage come with it,” he said.

Phuket News

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