Workers prefer Koh Phangan
Koh Phangan in Surat Thani was ranked as the world's best place for a workation this year by the William Russell website.
"Workation" refers to the act of working remotely from a holiday destination. The trend picked up following the advent of work from home programmes.
On the William Russell website, Koh Phangan is followed by Gran Canaria, Spain; Lisbon, Portugal; Austin, United States; Sao Paulo, Brazil; Budapest, Hungary; Jung Ku, South Korea; Bali, Indonesia; Belgrade, Serbia; Berlin, Germany; and Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Monthly living costs, internet speeds, entertainment and safety were considered for the ranking, William Russell said. Koh Phangan was ranked first for its affordable living cost of US$1,051 (37,000 baht) per month, 24 megabytes-per-second internet, "excellent" entertainment and safety.
Surat Thani governor Wichawut Jinto said workation emerged during the Covid-19 pandemic, when work-from-home policies were imposed.
In December, the Tourism Authority of Thailand instructed business operators to be receptive to accommodating digital nomads at places like Koh Phangan due to a rise in the trend.
Foreigners told Thai authorities they liked island's geographical features, convenient transport, many activities and affordable living costs.
Wannee Thaipanich, a hotel operator, said she's satisfied with Koh Phangan's ranking, adding the island's tourism industry is recovering following the government's lifting of Covid-19 restrictive measures, including the Thailand Pass requirement.