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"Expensive" Phuket dead as a dodo this high season

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On 1/23/2019 at 5:02 PM, DrDave said:

If the army, with all of their might, couldn't (or wouldn't) tackle the corruption problem while in power, then I hold very little hope that any elected government will solve this problem.

Corruption is usually what keeps totalitarian governments in power? 

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Not sure whether to post on this thread all the other one, "Patong – the wake" as they seem to be dealing with fairly similar subjects on most posts, so here goes.........

 

I think it would be fairly obvious from those folk who live here that the generally expected high season time before Christmas (say December 1 or even earlier in the past) didn't really materialise to any great extent and there were days when this was very noticeable, however now that situation has changed and Patong is a busier place than I have seen it for some time.

 

Plenty of Chinese, although more than a fair share of rude, noisy, bothersome ones and I suppose I should add ignorant to that, because just two days ago I (again) reminded a Chinese guy sitting outside Starbucks that taking his shoes off and putting his feet on the table was not the done thing. Similarly I reprimanded an errant mother inside Starbucks as she was letting her two young kids run around the place like it was a playground, and they were screaming and shouting at the top of their voices, so I did likewise at her face, but used a well-known expletive that rhymes with truck to put across my point (I may add that the Starbucks staff were most appreciative of my moves as they seem very reluctant to act on such things).

 

More prevalent than ever before in my 12 years here were the Russians, which again included many of the surly unsmiling ones and many carrying plastic bags of Chang beers bought from the 7-Eleven when they were wandering around at night,

 

Add to that a smattering of Indians (no not Apaches) and some heavily tattooed overweight Aussies and the scene was/is almost complete.

 

Indeed a few of the property booths were reporting increased interest from mainly Chinese and Russians, with an odd exception, but having said that they were very happy with the upturn, because that market had been pretty grim for the past two months or so........ and possibly beyond.

 

The mix of nationalities was never more evident than the crowd at Red Hot last night, this because the excellent band fits some crowd interaction in their repertoire and asks the folks what country they are from. Lately the majority have been Russians and many of whom don't mind getting up dancing in front of the stage, but last night they were not the majority, in fact there was not a majority, but more of a mix with quite a few Germans, along with the Russians coming next in line, then some Brits and Aussies, some from the USA and Italy, a couple from Israel and China, along with yours truly from NZ, and before I forget a couple of tables of "more mature" Thai girls. 

 

An interesting point would be that the average age bracket of the entire "audience" would have been about 35-40 and I believe this is because this superb band plays a lot of good everyday rock 'n' roll, including a fabulous montage of Queen songs and stays away from the non mainstream stuff, thereby drawing this age bracket.

 

They would have to be several cuts above the band which plays in Monsoon and Lion and they always
seem to have a good following and indeed I have spotted a few of the same expats there over the past month or so.

 

So Patong is not as dead as a dodo at the moment, although as has often been mentioned, the general feedback from smaller businesses is that the spend is not there and as if to contradict that statement, my favourite Italian restaurant last night was full, yes full, with a couple of customers waiting for a table to become vacant!

 

So the situation seems about as stable as a box of frogs and there's no telling what the next month or two will hold, apart from the certainty that there will be lots of firecrackers in early February!

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On 1/22/2019 at 5:46 PM, spidermike007 said:

Agreed. No justification whatsoever for Phuket or Samui taxi prices. None. Apologists will disagree. So will the taxi mafia. It comes down to sloth. More and more sloth on the part of Prayuth and the incompetent army. Also massive corruption. 

 

Bottom line is the Samui and Phuket taxi mafia is far more powerful than the army. Seems to be a fact. Funny, but true. And very sad. The elections could not come soon enough!

 

I saw the military coup as Phuket's last chance to address the transport issue.  Nothing changed, except for a token airport and coast road bus, and these were not immediate. 

 

"The elections could not come soon enough!" - why do you say that?  I see them both as bad as each other. 

 

For decades, a democratically elected Government presided over the transport issue here, with nothing being done, then, it was the Thai military's turn to turn a blind eye to the issue.  Either way, the issue did not get addressed, causing the western tourist market to decline, thus forcing the void to be filled by cheap Chinese package holiday makers, in coach buses.  Without the coach buses, they basically couldn't afford a holiday on Phuket. 

 

Sadly, as far as transport is concerned, what Phuket has now, is all that Phuket will ever have, or not have.  Thus, I can only see a further decline in independent western tourists coming to Phuket. 

 

The various transport "clubs" and "associations" here certain let those in authority here know who holds the real power here.  

 

 

Edited by NamKangMan

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18 hours ago, xylophone said:

Not sure whether to post on this thread all the other one, "Patong – the wake" as they seem to be dealing with fairly similar subjects on most posts, so here goes.........

 

I think it would be fairly obvious from those folk who live here that the generally expected high season time before Christmas (say December 1 or even earlier in the past) didn't really materialise to any great extent and there were days when this was very noticeable, however now that situation has changed and Patong is a busier place than I have seen it for some time.

 

Plenty of Chinese, although more than a fair share of rude, noisy, bothersome ones and I suppose I should add ignorant to that, because just two days ago I (again) reminded a Chinese guy sitting outside Starbucks that taking his shoes off and putting his feet on the table was not the done thing. Similarly I reprimanded an errant mother inside Starbucks as she was letting her two young kids run around the place like it was a playground, and they were screaming and shouting at the top of their voices, so I did likewise at her face, but used a well-known expletive that rhymes with truck to put across my point (I may add that the Starbucks staff were most appreciative of my moves as they seem very reluctant to act on such things).

 

More prevalent than ever before in my 12 years here were the Russians, which again included many of the surly unsmiling ones and many carrying plastic bags of Chang beers bought from the 7-Eleven when they were wandering around at night,

 

Add to that a smattering of Indians (no not Apaches) and some heavily tattooed overweight Aussies and the scene was/is almost complete.

 

Indeed a few of the property booths were reporting increased interest from mainly Chinese and Russians, with an odd exception, but having said that they were very happy with the upturn, because that market had been pretty grim for the past two months or so........ and possibly beyond.

 

The mix of nationalities was never more evident than the crowd at Red Hot last night, this because the excellent band fits some crowd interaction in their repertoire and asks the folks what country they are from. Lately the majority have been Russians and many of whom don't mind getting up dancing in front of the stage, but last night they were not the majority, in fact there was not a majority, but more of a mix with quite a few Germans, along with the Russians coming next in line, then some Brits and Aussies, some from the USA and Italy, a couple from Israel and China, along with yours truly from NZ, and before I forget a couple of tables of "more mature" Thai girls. 

 

An interesting point would be that the average age bracket of the entire "audience" would have been about 35-40 and I believe this is because this superb band plays a lot of good everyday rock 'n' roll, including a fabulous montage of Queen songs and stays away from the non mainstream stuff, thereby drawing this age bracket.

 

They would have to be several cuts above the band which plays in Monsoon and Lion and they always
seem to have a good following and indeed I have spotted a few of the same expats there over the past month or so.

 

So Patong is not as dead as a dodo at the moment, although as has often been mentioned, the general feedback from smaller businesses is that the spend is not there and as if to contradict that statement, my favourite Italian restaurant last night was full, yes full, with a couple of customers waiting for a table to become vacant!

 

So the situation seems about as stable as a box of frogs and there's no telling what the next month or two will hold, apart from the certainty that there will be lots of firecrackers in early February!

 

"More prevalent than ever before in my 12 years here were the Russians" - yes, which is interesting, and I'm not sure why this is the case. 

 

The western sanctions are still in place, and oil is still down, thus, the Russian economy is not in good shape.  

 

It would be understandable if there were high net worth Russians coming here, but these are the cheap package holiday Russians.  Not sure where their money is coming from.   

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I know Phuket is a bit more expensive than elsewhere. But I have lived here more than 5 years and the only thing that has gone up is the food at Wineconnection. Everything else are the same prices.

The Baht is too expensive now, thats the problem ...

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On 1/26/2019 at 10:26 AM, tifino said:

but, Patong was one of the many that for them, history was wiped off the map by the Tsunmami

It was the tsunami that put Phuket on the map.

Pre-tsunami, many people would ask me how to pronounce the island's name.

Post tsunami, everyone knew how to pronounce it.............

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Posted (edited)

Every time I went to Phuket, I left with the impression that getting money sadly dominated every aspect of their being for the people living there. There were no smiles or laughter -- just the very serious business of getting as much money as you can for what you've got.

 

I guess that brought them a happiness that we just can't see, but if the money's dried up, the place must have one of the most miserable populations on the planet. My 5 or 6 trips over the years has been plenty. It gets a little worse and the people a little greedier every time I've gone, so I can't imagine anything that would compel me to visit the place ever again.  

 

Edited by Inn Between

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