Star Tour expecting Thailand bookings to double

PHUKET TOWN: Scandinavian tourists are heading for Thailand rather than Bali in the coming high season, said representatives of the giant Swedish company Star Tour this afternoon. A company executive said that Star Tour expects to bring 80,000 tourists to Thailand in the coming high season, most of whom will come to Phuket. This is twice the usual number. Five executives of the company today met with Vice Governor Winai Buapradit and other provincial officers to be reassured that their customers will be safe in Phuket. V/Gov Winai said, “Of course, we are prepared for any unexpected event. We have improved security. Not only land police, but also airport and marine security units are ready.” One of the Star Tour executives, Odd Espan Eide, said, “There will be 80,000 tourists visiting Thailand, and Phuket in particular.” He added, “One issue which is very important is communication between us. We don’t want to see too many policemen [on the streets] because people will think, ‘Oh my God! What’s happening here?’ “[But] we would like to [be sure] that the police are [in control of things], and that you have a plan and a strategy.” Another, Bjorn Winberg, remarked, “We have heard that Thailand is a very safe place. It is very important that you are cautious.” In a related development, Pol Maj Gen Ronnarong Yungyouen, Deputy Commissioner of Provincial Police Region 8, today held a closed meeting with high-ranking officers from every police department based on the island to ensure stepped-up security runs smoothly. Speaking after the two-hour meeting at Phuket Town Police Station this morning, Gen Ronnarong explained that the meeting focused on coordination between security units, including the Royal Thai Navy, extra officers being drafted in from the Border Patrol Police Bureau and a five-person bomb squad expected to arrive from Bangkok later this week. “I’d say tourists can be confident about their safety because we’ve prepared a strategy to cope with anything that might happen at any time,” said Gen Ronnarong. “We are working harder because of the increasing number of tourists heading for Phuket. But that’s okay, we can do it,” he added. Today’s discussion was the third meeting of police top-brass in Phuket since the Kuta bombing on October 12.

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

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