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Time's Up: Patong Mayor Posts Warning on Touts

Time's Up: Patong Mayor Posts Warning on Touts

Wednesday, February 23, 2011
THREE large signs have gone up around Patong warning tourists to beware of bogus time share or holiday club products.

The signs - in key locations - were authorised by the Mayor of Patong, Pian Keesin, in reaction to complaints about time share touts and the post-contract service of some operators.

The signs say: WARNING Many offers for ''Time share'' ''Holiday club'' deals may be misrepresentation or bogus products.

It gives a similar warning in Thai before mentioning a hotline telephone number - 076 342079 - and two email addresses, timesharescam@phuketcity.go.th and holidayclubscam@phuketcity.go.th

Phuket council member Weerawit Kuresombut, one of several councillors who had been lobbying Mayor Pian for action on the touts, said: ''I'm pleased with what the mayor has done.

''Everybody is keen to do business on Phuket but some businesses make things worse here.

''They do not even pay for the cost of picking up their garbage.''

Khun Weerawit said about 800 million baht was taken out of Thailand each year through time share.

Tourists have complained about constant harassment from touts on motorcycles or on foot all over Patong. Once people are pressured into an extended interview, they become subjected to intense sales pressure.

Phuket has several reputable brand-name holiday or vacation clubs but none of them employ touts in Patong.

The signs are at the t-junction beside the Patong temple, at the beach end of Soi Bangla, and behind the Jungceylon shopping mall.
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Comments

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Can we have one in Kata too?

Posted by VFaye on February 23, 2011 12:27

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When do the warning signs go up about jet skis and tuk tuks?

Posted by john s on February 23, 2011 12:34

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Well it's a start, but why don't they put the signs up for Jet Skis, Tuk Tuks etc?

Posted by bob on February 23, 2011 12:34

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Great idea , how about three signs putting up telling tourists about tuk tuk scams, jet ski scams?

Posted by Lord Jim on February 23, 2011 12:40

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It's a good move to remove an unwanted element from Phuket.

Interesting to note, and something that most of us fully aware of, is the fact that most touts are not Thai Nationals.

So how about the Thai Authorities leveling the playing field by extending these much needed announcements to the JetSki and Tuk Tuk Scams.

If you can do it for the Touts, you can do it for the other types of scams on the island.

Posted by Graham on February 23, 2011 14:00

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They put a billboard for this and are unable to do anything about the jet skis and tuk tuks?

Posted by Anonymous on February 23, 2011 14:18

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is it natural to be skeptical and think of the fact that we may have a conflict or common area of interest re tuk tuks.... the mayor of Patongs son...Prab...is the head of the tuk tuk group....I'm scratching my head here...I mean who is kidding who???

Posted by zig on February 24, 2011 06:44

Editor Comment:

The truth is that you are kidding yourself, zig. Everywhere in the world, local politicians have sons and daughters who manage family businesses or develop their own interests. Last year, Lee Kwan Yew and his son sued the New York Times and won after the NYT implied that the father had been guilty of nepotism. The newspaper lost. There is no conflict in having a father and son who are both successful. Best remember the motto: Evil be to he who evil thinks.

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Just now, I sent an enquiry email to the two email addresses that are highlighted on these signs:

timesharescam@phuketcity.go.th and holidayclubscam@phuketcity.go.th

Well, within 30 seconds, my email came bouncing back. Both email addresses do not exist.

Can someone from the Mayor's office please explain why they have erected these signs, yet seem to have failed even to configure the email addresses?

(And even if these were real email addresses, what is the likelihood that someone would actually monitor and reply to enquiries?)

Posted by Simon Luttrell on February 24, 2011 07:29

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Just so you know, the tuk-tuk drivers get between 300-500 baht from every person that is "scammed" into going to the hotel/resort who is doing the selling.

So they are going to be out of income as well now.

Posted by Anonymous on February 24, 2011 11:04

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Saw the scratch & sniff card lady on Beach Road yesterday morning with an unsuspecting Asian couple from out of town. Saw a few others, but put my head down and kept on walking.

My comment was "I own a villa already". To which one of them said, a timeshare would still be a good investment. Hey right!

I, for one however, will not lose any sleep if the touts are reined in.

Posted by GiantFan on February 24, 2011 14:40

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To Editor, re your answer to zig:

I realise that you live here, but jeez; it is apparent to everyone that you have been sleeping with dogs so long that you've picked up all their fleas and bad habits.

Posted by Theodor on February 28, 2011 01:02


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