Tourism News

Tourism News Phuketwan Tourism News
facebook recommendations


Sign up now for our News Alert emails and the latest breaking news plus new features.

Click to subscribe

Existing subscribers can unsubscribe here


A contestant for Best Job in the World tests the water

Wanted: More Phuket Risk-Takers, and Money

Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Phuketwan Opinion

RISKS sometimes have to be taken to succeed. And Phuket needs more risk-takers, not only among tourists bold enough to ignore travel warnings to come, but also among the island's marketers.

A lot of comments, positive and negative, have been made about the ''Summer in Phuket'' campaign.

Essentially, the campaign asks tourists to ignore the clouds plus the occasional (and sometimes heavy) rain that falls during the low/green/wet/rainy season.

Perhaps the campaign will persuade more tourists to come, perhaps it will have minimal impact. To me, it falls into the category of ''Nice try but . . .''

There is already one other Thailand marketing effort in that category, the recent campaign to bring tourists to the country for a newly invented cocktail, the Siam Sunray.

The drink requires a mix of vodka, coconut liqueur, lemon grass, ginger and chili peppers.

And the launch of the drink did garner some international media attention, although perhaps not always the kind the Tourism Authority of Thailand envisaged.

''Successful signature drinks are one way to fast-track holiday destinations onto the world tourism map,'' the promotion claimed.

Oh really? Well, dubious claims bring dubious rewards.

Jason Wilson put it well when he wrote in the Washington Post: ''I often wish I could be a fly on the wall during a tourism authority boardroom meeting: 'OK, people, we're not leaving here until someone comes up with our new official cocktail.

'''Brazil has its caipirinha, Peru has its pisco sour. In Spain, they dump fruit and brandy into red wine and call it a national drink. Even Martinez, California, has a drink it claims is the precursor to the martini. Think outside the box!'''

And so was born the Siam Sunray.

Virtually simultaneously, Tourism Queensland in Australia has been running a promotion for ''The Best Job in the World.''

Essentially, it is a worldwide competition to find someone to spend six months exploring the delights of the Great Barrier Reef, to share the experience on the world wide web, and to be paid A$150,000 to do it . . .''The Best Job in the World.''

The 16 finalists from 15 nations have just arrived on Hamilton Island for the final judging, to be met by media crews from around the globe.

As a cliche marketer might say, the success of the competition has ''surpassed everyone's wildest expectations.''

''We were confident we had a pretty good idea, but the result's been absolutely brilliant,'' said Tourism Queensland CEO Anthony Hayes.

''We think we've just tipped over A$100 million in international publicity with hopefully another A$20 to A$30 million coming this week.

''At a tough time it's absolutely essential to turn it into bookings to make sure people are actually coming here for a holiday,'' he said.

International media were waiting on Hamilton Island, including television teams from France, Germany and Japan, and the finalists frolicked hard for the lenses.

A BBC crew shot footage for an hour-long documentary, according to local reports, while photographers ''snapped away incessantly, and TV teams grabbed interviews.''

Phuket is the best thing that Thailand tourism has going for it, beyond Bangkok.

With a bit of independence and considerably more spending money, the island would be able to stake its own claim to a place in the tourism sun, in its own way.

Meanwhile, we will be hoping that the Summer in Phuket campaign works . . . while checking out the Great Barrier Reef and wishing we were doing ''the Best Job in the World.''

Phuket Summertime Summit: Photo Special
Photo Album They came, they saw, they shared a drink or two, and talked about the weather. That was the Summertime Summit, languid and relaxed as a summer's day.
Phuket Summertime Summit: Photo Special

Latest Phuket News

MediaWATCH: 'White Shirts' Bangkok Street Protest
Latest A move to the middle begins with a Bangkok parade to end bickering; Call to extradite Thaksin; 'farcical' Thailand politics; Aussie holiday nightmare as guests demand money back.
MediaWATCH: 'White Shirts' Bangkok Street Protest

Rude Phuket Awakening for 'Impolite' Tourist Simon
Photo Album As he waited to catch a flight home from Phuket in January, British tourist Simon Burrowes had no idea that his holiday in Thailand was about to take a troubled twist.
Rude Phuket Awakening for 'Impolite' Tourist Simon

Phuket Begins Climb to Asean Summit Success
It's Official Ready, set, go. The race has begun to ready the island and its people for a Asean Plus Six summit, plus spinoff benefits. The island's profile and income should gain a boost.
Phuket Begins Climb to Asean Summit Success

Phuket TDA Base Will Teach Thailand to Swim
Photo Album The Thai Diving Association has plans to teach Thailand to swim at the big pool going in alongside its news HQ on the road to Phuket Airport. There's a big boat out the front.
Phuket TDA Base Will Teach Thailand to Swim

Phuket Hub: AirAsia Set For Resorts Growth
Photo Album: Budget carrier AirAsia is expected to open one or more low cost resorts on Phuket in its drive for a slice of business from China and beyond.
Phuket Hub: AirAsia Set For Resorts Growth

Phuket Light Rail Plan Starts on 52b Baht Track
Latest Many ideas have been suggested down the years for Phuket's transport needs. Now a Singapore based private investment group suggests a light rail network.
Phuket Light Rail Plan Starts on 52b Baht Track


Comments have been disabled for this article.

Friday June 21, 2024
Horizon Karon Beach Resort & Spa


Facebook Twitter