Phuket tourism market edging towards recovery in 2024

Phuket’s tourism industry is undergoing an ongoing rebound, with last year’s airport passenger arrivals edging towards pre-pandemic figures according to a new report from consulting group C9 Hotelworks. While hitting 7 million, it was still short of the 9 million mark set in 2019. This year the trend is continuing with 1.62 million arrivals to date in February, compared to 1.77 million recorded in the same period of 2019.

The Chinese market is slowly recuperating, with last year’s figures at 650,000, still a stark contrast to the 2 million arrivals pre-pandemic. Nonetheless, the introduction of visa exemptions for Chinese and increasing flight connectivity is anticipated to bolster these numbers.

Phuket tourism - Flight arrivals
Metrics showcasing the flight arrivals at Phuket International Airport

Regional Southeast Asian markets are outperforming previous records, with Singapore’s arrival numbers doubling and Malaysia experiencing a 67% boost. These statistics underscore the potential of short-haul tourism in a world adjusting to post-pandemic travel norms.

Hotel metrics mirror this positive trajectory, with hotel occupancies soaring to nearly 78% in 2023. The Average Daily Rate (ADR) has reached a new historical peak, climbing 43% from the previous year. This uptick is attributed not only to returning tourists but also to Phuket’s ability to attract a higher-spending demographic.

Phuket tourism - Passenger arrivals
Passenger arrival metrics at Phuket International Airport

The hotel sector’s development pipeline has slowed but is highlighted by 19 projects with 3,719 keys market, among which 3 properties are hotel conversion with 821 keys. Branded properties represent 91% of the pipeline. Based on C9’s market research incoming supply has been reduced by over 50%, as Phuket’s real estate market has seen land cost skyrocket and an overheated property sector. Many hotel owners and developers have shifted focus from greenfield projects to conversions and repositioning via renovations.

To download and read C9 Hotelworks Phuket Hotel Market Update 2024 CLICK

Phuket NewsPhuket TravelSouth Thailand NewsTravel

Bill Barnett

Bill Barnett has over 30 years of experience in the Asian hospitality and property markets. He is considered to be a leading authority on real estate trends across Asia, and has sat at almost every seat around the hospitality and real estate table. Bill promotes industry insight through regular conference speaking engagements and is continually gathering market intelligence. Over the past few years he has released four books on Asian property topics.

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