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Phuket tourism going down the pan just like Pattaya: Few tourists and much worse than last year


webfact

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7 minutes ago, Is this real said:

While it has a very little to do with the world economy, the Baht, or, the ship sinking, those aren't the #1 reason in Phuket. 

#1 is:  Thailand has quietly decided that it doesn't want tourists.  The beaches, were eliminated as  the major attraction.  Shops, restaurants, bars, night clubs, vendors were eliminated, along with the thousands of beach loungers and umbrellas that were filled with free spending western tourists.

When these were eliminated, western tourist went where they were welcomed.

Shops, restaurants and bars eliminated? Really? By whom?

The beaches look much better now that loungers have been restricted. Before, it was hard to see any sand there were so many.

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its easy one word...corruption 

of course this wasn't mentioned in the article.

Corruption is the reason there are no lifeguards, no town planning, filthy dirty rubbish and dirty water flowing into the ocean, no proper water conservation, no education as to how to make tourists more welcome, no facilities at local beaches, destruction of the natural environment, endless condo projects....the list goes on

and regardless of the downturn those at the top benefitting from corruption continue to clean up, so its not going to change

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7 minutes ago, connda said:

Now that tourism has been disemboweled, watch the Eye of Sauron turn inward and start decimating the long-stay expat population in the name of national security, borders, and culture.

Phew! What a fertile imagination you have.......

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3 hours ago, PatOngo said:

First it was Europeans, then Chinese, now Indians. Wait till they discover the potential of tourists from the north and south pole!

Hmm… forgetting about the Africans are we?

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4 hours ago, webfact said:

The trade war between the US and China is also affecting investment. Investors as well as tourists themselves are running scared. 

Thai national past time - blaming others rather than trying to solve an issue solved as simple as lowering your prices for a while

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3 hours ago, Skallywag said:

Tourism numbers have doubled in the last 9 years, 19M to 38M.  A 30% drop is disturbing, but in reality there has been a 70% increase during the last 9 years.

And yet nine years ago in most of the places like Phuket, Pattaya, and Chiang Mai, tourism was robust.  Now these places are becoming as dead as door-nails, especially devoid of farang.  So, wherever those additional 19M tourist are, they aren't frequenting the normal tourist hot-stops and business that they did almost a decade ago.

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There are many things that have impacted tourism in Thailand.  However, it is clear that the one thing the Thai government can address is the value of the baht.  Thus far, they have decided to do nothing!

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1 hour ago, ThomasThBKK said:

On top of that you have all the luxury bs taxes.

 

Wine, Designer clothes, Foreign Beer, Steaks, Watches, Jewellry, bikes, ebikes, cars etc...all overpriced. It's cheaper to fly to europe and buy a chanel bag then to buy it here, people with money aren't stupid, they don't piss it away if they can buy it in singapore for less.

 

 

The best is kitchens, was shopping for a german kitchen in Thong Lor: https://www.used-design.com/angebot/54121/einbaukuche-eggersmann-tokio-beton-spachtelfront

This think was quoted me for 6 mio THB in Thailand - i walked out backwards.

I spend about half my time here and half in Australia.I would have loved to buy a Triumph motorcycle here ,even with the incompetent ,dangerous,suicidal drivers . I bought it in Australia for the equivalent of 490,000-500,000 Bht. They want 645,000bht here and they 're made in Chonburi.

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3 hours ago, HiSoLowSoNoSo said:

Phuket was really the "Pearl of the south" when I first came there in the early 80's, today I would call it the black hole of the south, over built, traffic jams similar to Bangkoks and dirty water on the beaches. They only got them selves and their never ending greed to blame.

The exact reasons I left Phuket 10 years ago. It's a crying shame what's been done to Phuket, and as you say mainly down to greed.

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"The planes are full though."

Of course they are full because the airlines figured out decades ago empty planes means less income. So they cancel flights and fill their other flights with the people from the cancelled flights. Ergo: full flights. It doesn't mean more people are flying, in fact the opposite is the case.

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As I posted in a similar post about Pattaya, all of the details remain pertinent and real.

 

It is easy to blame the strong baht. And it is definitely a factor. But, there are so many other factors. The army, Prayuth, and the biggest joke spent five years sabotaging Western tourism. Now, the damage can be felt, and people are worried. Millions of jobs are at stake. Same applies to ex-pats. Many are leaving, or have left. Not feeling welcome?

 

Also, the unwillingness to tackle the scams, the traffic and public safety issues, the environmental issues, and so many other causes, are all having an impact on tourism. The decision to turn away from Western tourism, and focus almost exclusively on Chinese and Indian tourism was a mistake of historically monumental proportions. The TAT is barely making any effort to lure Westerners. And in my opinion they are the big spenders. I read surveys about the average Chinese tourists, being at the top of the list of big spenders. But, this is average. And the big spending Chinese do not come to Thailand for a dozen different reasons. The wife wants to buy a luxury handbag. The same Gucci bag that she likes is $3,500 in Singapore, London, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, or Dubai. In Bangkok that bag sells for $9,000. At a five star hotel, this same wealthy Chinese couple want a great bottle of wine. They see a good vintage of Domaine Coche-Dury Monthelie, which would sell for about $500 retail, at a five star in any of the above cities for $1,000 on the list. Same bottle, if it was available (highly unlikely) in Bangkok, would be 95,000 baht, or more. Wealthy people tend to be smart with their money. They simply will not pay stupid money for stuff. The luxury taxes have been discouraging high end tourism here for decades. It is policy that is so dumb, so shortsighted, so non-visionary, and it hurts the economy. If wine duty was 100%, you would have a thriving wine industry here, five to ten times the size of the current industry. So the state income would be made up on volume, and hundreds of thousands of jobs would be generated. This is simply another example of brain dead leaders, who have no vision, and are NOT leading the nation forward, are not helping the nation to progress, and are not benefitting the people of Thailand.

 

I was recently with a group of friends, and we wanted to order a bottle of wine, at of one of those high end restaurants in the EmQuartier complex. It was Bella Rocca Restaurant. I asked about a 2011 Chianti they had on the list. I was told they were out of stock. No have. I asked about a Barbaresco, at 2,600 baht. Again, out of stock. No have. How about this Nebbiolo? Do you have the 2010, as stated on the list? No have. We do have the 2016. OK, what is that wine like? Is it drinking well now? I do not know. Is there anyone here that is familiar with this wine list? No. Sorry sir. Hold on. Wait a minute. You have 100s of bottles on this list, ranging from 1200 baht to 10,000 baht per bottle, and NOBODY who works here knows anything about the wine? How about the manager? Oh, he does not know either. Are you serious? We all just looked at each other, and got up and walked out. We realized the restaurant was a pretender. And more than likely the food was marginal at best. It was all dressed up to look like a very nice Italian restaurant. But, it appeared to be only window dressing. High end tourists have little patience for that lack of quality and lack of service. They can get far better service in many other nations, without the onerous taxes on luxury goods like foreign wine!

 

Hopefully, we will eventually see a correction in the Thai baht. Although I feel for those in the hotel industry, lower rates over the long haul sure works for me! It may be the one area where we do not see inflation rearing it's ugly head!

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We can list all the correct reason but as always stubborn Thais will not listen and blame others and no real corrective action taken only talk and talk and more talk. 

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4 hours ago, Just1Voice said:

My feeling, and I admit I have no proof, is that the baht is being artificially propped up, but have no idea why. If it is, eventually it will crash, and the economic shockwave will have the power of a tsunami throughout Thailand. 

I,m not so sure that it is being propped up. One thing that is never taken into account is the MASSIVE amount of money that is being injected (pun unintended) directly into the Thai economy, under the table, every night, for amicable services rendered. This has to be in the billions of baht, straight into the prosperity of the country 🙂 Bear in mind that your average tourist spends more for friendly company than for hotel, food, and drink, combined !

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2014 - price of a small beer in a local bar = 40 Baht. Exchange rate was around 55 to £1 so cost to British tourist was £0.72.

 

2019 - price of a small beer in a local bar = 60 Baht. Exchange rate is 38 to £1, so cost to British Tourist is £1.58

 

Looks like a 100% + increase in 5 years.... that is why tourists are staying away.

 

Oh - and of my 20 or so friends who all bought houses and have lived here for 10 years plus... 3 have left already and 6 have their houses for sale. All going back to Europe as it is cheaper to live there now. If you don't believe me, check out Ocado.com. 

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4 hours ago, PatOngo said:

Easy! Time to put prices up 20-30% to compensate for the shortfall!

To compensate for a shortfall of 30% prices must rise by 42.9% approx.............. I think this would suit better.

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Pollution.  Sea is polluted in south and air is polluted in north.  Chiang Mai has worst air

pollution in the world.  Between those idiots in the mountains and ground burning everything and

all those diesel trucks, and nothing is done, I am glad tourists are waking up. 

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4 hours ago, Just1Voice said:

My feeling, and I admit I have no proof, is that the baht is being artificially propped up, but have no idea why. If it is, eventually it will crash, and the economic shockwave will have the power of a tsunami throughout Thailand. 

Actually the Baht is being kept up by a lot of outside money pouting into bonds with a fairly good interest rate. Similar thing happened a few years ago as the US and Japan preformed quantatative easing to help their economies lot of money poured into thai bonds and stock market from which I made some good money. There have been several articles about this in the Bangkok post.

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I moved from the UK to live in Pattaya back in 2004. In the year or two following that move the pound gradually rose until it hit something like 75 Baht, almost double what we get for our God-forsaken money these days. In the meantime, prices for many things have at least doubled, so the purchasing power of British people here has gone down by a factor of four in a bit over a decade. I'm not blaming anybody in particular for this, but it's a fact and helps explain why so many people don;t come here now, and why many people living here are on tight budgets.

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There has to be individuals here making unbelieveable fortunes.

How can they not be.

Even before the bahts rise , there were lots of items costing the same price as western prices in supermarkets and shopping malls.

 

BUT the retailer was paying his staff a fraction of Western wages.

And the retailer wasnt offering his staff  overtime bonuses  , penalty rates , sick pay or Super contributions !

AND  for the consumer , he never offered any sort of real warranty... even outright refused to honour printed guarantees enclosed in the box. Often the supposedly 'equal' brand he offered was a piece of crap as well - and failed shortly after purchase anyway.

 

And of late , everything is starting to require a 'fee'. 

My new KBank card just cost 800 baht.

Thats the only one I was offered.

The first was 200 , the 2nd 300 , the new one , needed because the 2nd wore out - 800.

I later found out that this is a yearly charge !

And when I said I wanted sms alerts on withdrawals ,  it cost another 800 baht.

Yet the interest rates are pretty much the same as my bank back home - that has a costly labour component , but is FEE-FREE.

Theres Company owners absolutely rolling in money - and its my view they are buying up big ...properties in countries that let them do so -freehold ( 555 )  , labour saving machinery , and super luxury items .

The oligarchy are on a roll , and they have no interest in reducing the baht by pushing for devaluation , they have no plans  to end the party early...

 

I should add that Fees are appearing everywhere as well... the Government is  now charging 100 baht for a car to enter a part of Sirinath National Park at Layan. Another 100 near Nai Yang..

If they are charging me 100 to pull in and park , how much are they charging The Pullman or Trisara for parking their  hotels in a National Park for years ? Of course all the Thais just drove around me and  in and wandered off without paying.

Now Jungceylon has decided to start charging motorbikes for parking - at the same rate as they charge a car !!

Its getting out of hand...

 

Yesterday some Americans said to me , as I got off my scooter , "Hey there ....Is there any cheaper supermarkets around here ? This one , (pointing at Big C behind them) is kinda expensive compared to home."

 

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Wel Wel Well i wonder Why , 

1/ Baht Exchange Rate.

2/ Smoke on the Beach ,Monkey House or Pay Up

3/ Visas

4/ Ripped off

Shall i go on, but Next week TOT will call a Press Conference telling the Media how good Thailand's Tourism is with Bold Figures to Demonstrate the accuracy of the Numbers of Chinese, Indians ect

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1 hour ago, Bluedan said:

its easy one word...corruption 

of course this wasn't mentioned in the article.

Corruption is the reason there are no lifeguards, no town planning, filthy dirty rubbish and dirty water flowing into the ocean, no proper water conservation, no education as to how to make tourists more welcome, no facilities at local beaches, destruction of the natural environment, endless condo projects....the list goes on

and regardless of the downturn those at the top benefitting from corruption continue to clean up, so its not going to change

could be.  as a side note, even the school officials are corrupt. cutting back on food for the kids, unform requirements and having interest in the stores that sell them, admittance kickbacks... that's teaching the young how to screw each other... hmmph

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5 hours ago, Snuller21 said:

And a way to strong Baht. Thailand used to be an affordable country for holidays. Not anymore as the Baht is way too strong. And that is also for the Export. Just look at the price for rice, and the declining of that as export as well. And Toyota making an assembly factory for HiLux in Myanmar, as they lose money on every assembled car in Thailand. Just saying.

What you say is correct but the rich and the power brokers love a high Thai baht it enables them to buy businesses, eg football clubs and real estate overseas at a lower. Dont discount either  the effect of lowering the baht would have on the "loss of face" factor

 

My bank bloke tells me household debt in Thailand has nver been higher and the closure rate of small businesses is growing

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15 minutes ago, Guderian said:

I moved from the UK to live in Pattaya back in 2004. In the year or two following that move the pound gradually rose until it hit something like 75 Baht, almost double what we get for our God-forsaken money these days. In the meantime, prices for many things have at least doubled, so the purchasing power of British people here has gone down by a factor of four in a bit over a decade. I'm not blaming anybody in particular for this, but it's a fact and helps explain why so many people don;t come here now, and why many people living here are on tight budgets.

Likewise the Aussie dollar .4 years back at parity with the $US now 21 baht to the $A.

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