Singapore cruise ship arrives to sample Patong’s delights

A cruise ship from Singapore anchored off Patong yesterday morning, bringing 3,000 passengers for a brief visit to the jewel in Phuket’s crown of insalubrity.

The Genting Dream, owned by Resorts World Cruises, arrived around dawn. The ship is on a five-day cruise out of Singapore and had stopped at Penang in Malaysia before arriving in Phuket, so passengers obviously know what they are in for.

Officials from the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s (TAT) Kuala Lumpur and Phuket offices welcomed the cruise ship’s arrival. The passengers are mostly Singaporean, Malaysian, Indian, Indonesian and Taiwanese.

The 335-metre Genting Dream has 18 decks and 1,674 rooms It can accommodate 3,352 passengers.

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Napasorn Kakai, director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, Phuket Office said that visitors arriving by boat, be it a private sailboat, a luxury yacht, or a massive cruise liner, tend to have larger spending budgets than other tourists. Even though cruise ship passengers only spend one day ashore, almost their whole time ashore is passed spending money at local restaurants, attractions, and souvenir stores.

Singapore cruise ship arrives to sample Patong's delights | News by Thaiger
Cruise ship passengers spend almost all their time ashore pouring money into the coffers of local restaurants, attractions, and souvenir stores.

The ship, left Singapore on Sunday and was due to leave Phuket yesterday evening to begin its return voyage, with scheduled calls at Langkawi and Port Klang, which services Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.

Meanwhile, Koh Samui is preparing to welcome its first cruise ship in three years since the Covid-19 pandemic. The Viking Mars, a Norwegian ship carrying more than 700 tourists, mostly Europeans, is due to make a one-day stop to allow its passengers to spend time on the island.

Pre-Covid, the cruise industry brought over 500,000 visitors each year to Phuket. In 2019, a total of 154 cruise ships brought in 485,000 people, making the island’s port one of the busiest in the world.


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Jon Whitman

Jon Whitman is a seasoned journalist and author who has been living and working in Asia for more than two decades. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Jon has been at the forefront of some of the most important stories coming out of China in the past decade. After a long and successful career in East sia, Jon is now semi-retired and living in the Outer Hebrides. He continues to write and is an avid traveller and photographer, documenting his experiences across the world.

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