The expats joined 120 resident locals in a two-day seminar at the Patong Beach Resort that was to conclude today with the presentation of t-shirts and caps for the Voluntary Tourists' Protection unit.
The call for volunteers was made earlier this month by Santi Pawai, chief of the Ministry of Tourism and Sports office on Phuket, who was recently also given the role of Director of the Business and Guide Registration Branch.
Khun Santi quickly learned that many of the rules governing tour companies and guides had never been enforced. His aim is to better protect tourists by ensuring that the rules are obeyed.
''We have some ideas on how to make sure that the safety and security of tourists is a priority,'' said Khun Santi, who aims to use some of the volunteers in undercover operations to flush out illegal guides.
''We will maintain the skills of those who have qualified over the past couple of days by holding regular six-monthly seminars.''
The unit's hq will be at the Tourism and Sports base at Surakul Stadium in Maeluan Road, Phuket City.