Phuket is one of the largest of islands of Thailand, located nearly 860 kilometers to the south of Bangkok. Phuket is also often referred as the ‘Pearl of the Andaman’, thanks to its natural possessions of rocky capes, limestone cliffs, white powdery beaches, tranquil board bays and tropical inland forests. All of these contribute to what has become the most preferred tourist destination in the Asia-Pacific. Phuket topology is rather unique, consisting of 70 percent mountainous region, with the remaining 30 percent being plains. Phuket Island, Phangnga and Krabi are collectively called the ‘living room of the world’, which had 3.5 million tourists last year alone.
The Tourism department of Thailand has rightly visualized the island’s potential and has carried out intense promotions in many countries like the Middle East and India. Airlines such as Thai Airways, Kingfisher and Air Berlin have not lagged behind and have now announced direct flight connections and routings to facilitate international tourists to Phuket. Promotional activities such as special videos on the island’s natural heritage through You Tube, and “Amazing Thailand” stalls in various industrial fairs including the Travel Fair at Berlin (the world’s most important tourism fair), have ensured Thailand’s surging presence on the international tourist circuit. Thailand’s visiting tourists consist largely of the Indian middle class and a growing number of Brazilians, given the increased stability in these economies. Moreover, says Castlewood Group’s CEO, Chris Comer, Singapore’s leading commercial real estate company, “Europe is the main source market for Phuket tourism and will continue to be so in the years to come”.
Nearly six percent of Thailand’s revenues are earned by the tourism industry, and Thailand continues to be a shining example on how to monetize tourism by positioning a nation’s exotic destinations as exclusive, luxurious and premium, while offering a variety of tourist-specific packages. Phuket heads the list of such ‘dream destinations’ in Thailand.
Comer adds that, “The increase in direct flights to Phuket will draw more tourists to the island. The tourism growth in Phuket will create a positive outlook for the hotel industry.”
According to Tourism Ministry sources, in 2011 19.09 million tourists visited Thailand, marking an increase of 19.8 percent as compared to the previous year, which contributed $US23 million to Thailand’s tourism revenue. The estimation of tourists for the year 2012 are believed to be set to increase by up to 8 to 10 percent.
In addition, the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s innovative marketing blitz for 2012 to attract tourists, using ” Amazing Thailand Always Amazes You” theme proves the efficacy of the meticulous research and planning the ministry has adopted to reach out to interested tourists in various parts of the globe. The continual brand-strengthening activities the Thailand Tourism Authority involves itself in provides a unique role model that other countries in the region should replicate to garner impressive increase in visitors.
The aggressive packaging of Thailand’s islands has led to more domestic and international flights and tourists visiting these islands for fantastic holiday experience.
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