Department of Tourism came to the rescue of Krabi tour scam victims
Much higher financial collateral may be required in future licence application
The Department of Tourism (DOT), Ministry of Tourism and Sports, and related agencies jointly set up tourist relief centre ready to assist the many victims following the recent tour scam case in Krabi which involved thousands of Thai tourists from all over the country. In a preemptive measure, the DOT has also been entrusted to consider raising the amount of financial collateral to be deposited by whoever is applying for licence as tour agency.
Acting Second Lieutenant Arnupap Gaesornsuwan, DOT’s Director General, revealed that
“The meeting chaired by Permanent Secretary for Tourism Mr Suwat Sidthilaw had assigned the working group comprising Krabi Provincial Tourism and Sports Office; Tourism Authority of Thailand Krabi Office; Tourist Police Division; Bureau of Prevention and Assistance in Tourist Fraud; Office of Tourism Business and Guide Registration - Southern Division Region 2; Krabi Provincial Police; Tourist Police Krabi Office, Krabi Tourism Association, and relevant private agencies, to set up and operate this temporary tourist help centre. Located in the arrival lounge of Krabi International Airport in Southern Thailand, the special unit assists the af
fected tourists in filing a case against the tour agency while facilitating their stay in this famous resort town.
“In Krabi, we are also requested to find suitable accommodation and offer back-up plans for tourists who arrive in Krabi unaware that the hotel they have supposedly reserved long time ago has been rendered out of service. This help centre will coordinate with various hotel properties in order to provide accommodation at very special rates to suit different needs. For tourist with very tight budget, the centre has arranged for free accommodation at the Institute of Physical Education Krabi Campus, courtesy of the ministry,” said the Director General.
As for a more sustainable solution, the Director General added that the DOT would conduct a feasibility study and probably organise a forum of stakeholders of the tourism industry to seek directive conclusion. They may consider raising the amount of financial collateral from those applying for registration of tour companies in the future. This financial deposit will serve as a guarantee for bonafide business operation.
“I would advise all clients of Phu Phranang tour who have yet to travel to Krabi to duly prepare their documents and any other evidence of purchase in order to seek legal action against this tour agency at the Consumer Protection Police Division office. For tourists who reside outside of Bangkok, please contact the Consumer Protection Police Division 2, or Krabi provincial police, for further action,” announced the Director General.
The Consumer Protection Police Division office is located at the Crime Suppression Division building, Phaholyothin Road, Chatuchak District, Bangkok. The officer in charge of the case here is Pol Col Thanut Saengtunchai who may be contacted during office hours at telephone number 02 513 3217 or 081 816 3504.