The Phuket Sandbox program welcomed 33,059 international arrivals in the first two and a half months, from July 1 to September 16, 2021.
Fully vaccinated and without quarantine, international travelers have come to Phuket on direct international flights operated by major airlines from points around the world. This included Thai Airways International from Copenhagen, Frankfurt, Paris, London and Zurich; Etihad Airways from Abu Dhabi; Qatar Airways from Doha; EL AL Israel Airlines of Tel Aviv; Cathay Pacific from Hong Kong; Emirates of Dubai and Singapore Airlines of Singapore.
The United States, United Kingdom, Israel, Germany and France are the biggest markets. Meanwhile, advance room reservations continue to increase.
Visitors to Phuket Sandbox are required to stay at SHA Plus hotels in Phuket for added safety. SHA Plus certification indicates that a hotel is following security measures to control COVID-19 and that at least 70% of its workforce has been fully immunized.
With 161,384 overnight stays currently registered for September, the three-month total from July to September is currently 528,365 overnight stays. These included 190,843 overnight stays in July and 176,121 nights in August. Longer term, the current total of overnight stays for the period October 2021 to February 2022 is 74,362 overnight stays.
The Phuket Sandbox Visitor Survey showed that 80% of those surveyed were happy with the hospitality of the locals and 85% were happy with SHA Plus certified hotels. They also ranked the top five most satisfied on: the SHA Plus airport shuttle, the reservation service for the SHA Plus airport shuttle, the reservation service for SHA Plus hotels, the overall quality of service at the international airport of Phuket and health check upon arrival in Phuket.
The survey was conducted by TAT between July 11 and September 15, 2021. The 117 people interviewed were visitors from Israel (36), the United States (17), Germany (11), the United Kingdom. Uni (10), Switzerland (8) and others. (i.e. Denmark, Norway, Belgium, Luxembourg, Qatar, Bahrain and Singapore). About 80% of the respondents were between 25 and 56 years old.
In addition to the necessary health and safety measures put in place for visiting international travelers, Phuket’s vaccination program as of September 12 saw 92% of the local population receiving their first dose of the vaccine, while 81% had completed the series of two doses. Phuket is also now embarking on the administration of the third dose of vaccine, or a booster dose. (TAT)