First cruise ship since Covid arrived in Phuket

The 18-story cruise ship Spectrum of The Seas dropped anchor off Patong Beach on Monday. (Photo: Achadtaya Chuenniran)

PHUKET: The first cruise ship to visit Phuket since the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic arrived on Monday for a brief visit.

The Spectrum of The Seas, with nearly 4,600 passengers on board, anchored off Patong Beach around 7am and was due to return to Singapore at 8pm on Monday.

Nanthasiri Ronnasiri, director of the island’s Tourism Board office, said 800 passengers had booked day trips to the island. Other passengers were seen leaving the ship for the beach.

She said vacationers arriving on yachts and cruise liners were a prime target for the province because they have high purchasing power.

Spectrum of The Seas was the first cruise to call on Phuket since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020. The previous year, 154 ships brought 485,000 passengers to the island.

The Spectrum of The Seas began its voyage in Singapore on Friday, heading first to Klang and Penang in Malaysia. Phuket is his last stop. The ship is due to return to Singapore on Wednesday.

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