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THAI adamant on axing Aussie flights

Legacy Phuket Gazette



THAI adamant on axing Aussie flights | The Thaiger

PHUKET: Despite an appeal from Governor Udomsak Uswarangkura, Thai Airways International (THAI) says it will stick to its decision to suspend direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne to Phuket, effective February 1.

Kalayapha Panich, the airline’s Phuket-based District Sales Manager for Upper-Southern Thailand, said that the direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne to Phuket will be rerouted to Bangkok.

She added, “The main reason for this rerouting is that there are more passengers who want to fly direct to Bangkok [from Sydney and Melbourne]. In effect, the regular flight – TG 980, every Monday, Thursday and Sunday – is the same, except that it lands in Bangkok, not Phuket.

“If demand increases, maybe we can reinstate the direct flights to Phuket.”

Siripakorn Cheawsamoot, Assistant Director of TAT’s local office, told the Gazette that Gov Udomsak discussed the axing of the direct service with the TAT, the Phuket Tourist Association (PTA) and THAI management, and asked the airline to keep the direct flights going.

“We don’t want to see THAI stop the direct flights,” K. Siripakorn added. “When our national airline stops flying straight here, people may lose confidence in Phuket. Luckily, other airlines still fly here direct.”

The TAT is planning a road show in Australia and Japan next month, he added. “The Governors of Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi, representatives of the Andaman provinces’ Provincial Administration Organizations (OrBorJor) and the TAT Region 4 Office will be in Australia February 11 and 12 to thank the people there who still visit the Andaman coastal provinces.

“Asian tourists still come to Thailand, but some of them have changed their destinations from Phuket to Bangkok or Koh Samui,” K. Siripakorn said.

Panu Maswongsa, Vice-President of the PTA, told the Gazette that he believed THAI would have more passengers if the airline had better marketing and management.

“Jet Line Asia, Tiger Air and Silk Air still fly direct to Phuket [from abroad], which suggests there is passenger demand. We must help our province by contacting the airlines that still have direct flights to Phuket and co-operating with them.”

With THAI having also slashed its service between Phuket and the capital, it is becoming increasingly difficult for people to book seats to fly to the island from Bangkok.

Meanwhile, THAI’s budget subsidiary Nok Air has announced that on February 1 it will launch a service between Bangkok and Trang, with one flight a day.

Nok Air already serves Chiang Mai, Haad Yai, Phuket, Udon Thani, and Nakhon Sri Thammarat.

Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phuket. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

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Democrats toppled in Phuket

The Thaiger & The Nation



Democrats toppled in Phuket | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Democrat Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva resigned the leadership position last night amid dismal polls around the country

The Democrat Party in Phuket, once a reliable strong-hold of Democrat votes, has yielded its customary monopoly, ceding two House seats to the junta-aligned Phalang Pracharat Party.

The unofficial tally, as of late last night, gave Phalang Pracharat’s Sutha Prateep na Thalang the victory in Constituency 1 with 32,338 votes.

He beat Democrat Rewat Areerob, who got 25,198 votes.

The voter turnout was 70.80 per cent.

In Constituency 2, Natthee Thinsakhu of Phalang Pracharat beat Democrat Chaiyos Panyawai, 26,787 votes to 23,492.

Voter turnout was 72.57 per cent.

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Guyanese arrested over ‘magic’ bank note scam in Phuket

The Thaiger



Guyanese arrested over ‘magic’ bank note scam in Phuket | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Surachete Hakparn

A Guyanese man has been arrested in Phuket after the owner of a local language school reported a money scammer with an unusual scam.

The Immigration Bureau Chief Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn reports that they have arrested the Guyanese man named Abdul Kalam Azad Sattaur at a mansion in Phuket Town last Friday.

The arrest follows a Thai woman, the owner of a language school in Phuket, filing a report to the Thalang Police that a suspect used a fake Facebook and LINE account and claimed that he was an American man who had worked in Syria.

He told the woman that he will send a security box which contained blank papers and a special liquid that would turn the blank paper into bank notes when she added the special liquid.

He claimed that the total money was 650,000 US dollar, about 20 million baht.

He said that the woman had to pay him an amount before he would send the security box. The victim had transferred money to the man’s bank account 10 times, a total of about 9 million baht.

Beware of magic bank notes!

Guyanese arrested over 'magic' bank note scam in Phuket | News by The Thaiger Guyanese arrested over 'magic' bank note scam in Phuket | News by The Thaiger Guyanese arrested over 'magic' bank note scam in Phuket | News by The Thaiger

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Russian ‘mafia’ suspect arrested in Phuket

The Thaiger



Russian ‘mafia’ suspect arrested in Phuket | The Thaiger

PHOTO: Siam Rath/Thai Immigration

A male Russian ‘mafia’ identity has been arrested in Chalong, wanted over a number of alleged offenses in his home country.

Lt Gen Surachate Hakparn says, “Officers have arrested a Russian man named Igor Tretiakov (spelt as ‘Ior’ on the Immigration poster), at an apartment in Chalong last Friday.”

“We were notified from the Russian Embassy about the man wanted over a number of ‘mafia’ style offenses in Russian. He was living in Thailand using a tourist visa.”

“He has threatened and extorted many people in Russian and then fled to Thailand. His visa will be revoked and he will be deported back to Russia to face charges.”

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