About 15% of advance bookings have been cancelled in the past week in the wake of the boat capsize 8 days ago. Chinese tourists are voting with their bookings citing a loss of confidence in Phuket marine safety, and safety generally.
The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports Pongpanu Svetarundra says, “Chinese tourists are Thailand’s most important market at the moment.
The Phuket boat tragedy has already affected not only Phuket’s tourism but also mental and economic confidence. We are seeing clear signs of a back-lash.”
“There are more than 10 million Chinese tourists visiting Thailand each year which has already generated more than 500,000 million baht.
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More than 3 million of them are travelling to Phuket each year which has generated at least 150,000 million baht.”
“About 15% of advance rooms booking have been canceled. Chinese tourists are not confident in Phuket safety at the moment.
The Chinese government has also made announcements about tourism safety in Phuket and Thailand.”
“I am also the president of the Tourism Assistance Fund. We are funding compensation to be paid to boats tragedy victims as soon as possible. We need to get back Chinese tourist confidence after this boat tragedy as fast as possible. We are keen for Chinese tourists to keep coming to Thailand and Phuket. ” – The Thaiger