Small hotels urged to get a licence
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Small hotels urged to get a licence

Tourists visit Phuket in January. (Photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran)
Tourists visit Phuket in January. (Photo: Achadthaya Chuenniran)

Phuket aims to promote licences among small hotel operators to prepare for the high season. The registration for hotel licences is expected to augment the city's capacity to welcome over 10,000 visitors per day, or 2.19 million visitors per year.

The Phuket Boutique Accommodation Consortium (BAC) organised a seminar on Sept 7 to promote a ministerial regulation issued by the Department of Public Works and Town and Country Planning of the Interior Ministry in June, amending qualifications needed for a hotel licence.

Phuket deputy governor Danai Sunantarod said the amendment offers a good opportunity for small hotel operators to apply for licences and register their hotels legally for public agencies' inspection.

The regulation says small hotels are exempt from certain building qualifications applied to general hotels, such as the width of the stairs or the retracted area from a public road. However, safety protocols such as fire management and those concerning building structure remain mandatory qualifications.

Phuket BAC president Chinnawat Udomniyom said that over 80% of small hotels on the resort island do not hold legal licences.

Now that the regulations allow them to be exempt from certain demands, he believes more small operators will register their businesses.

Wirintra Paphakityotphat, head of the Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT) Region 11, said that over 25-30 million visitors are expected to come to Thailand by the end of this year. She was citing figures by the Tourism Council of Thailand.

She said Phuket has around 4,000-5,000 hotels and only 1,000 of them hold licences to operate the business.

It is hoped, she added, that this might help support the expected 2.19 million visitors per year, creating over 16.2 billion baht in tourism revenue.

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