Benefits of Promoting Pattaya as a Dive Destination

Posted on 04/11/11 1 Comment There has recently been and upswing in activity in the Thai government and in the Thai universities concerning the improvement of Tourism as a whole by promoting Pattaya as a scuba diving destination. Through this activity, the community has apparently become aware that the best thing we as humans can do to influence the actual diving here (on top of course to getting our waters clean and keeping it so) is to place artificial reefs in the Gulf of Thailand. In our humble opinions, the best artificial reefs possible are steel ship wrecks. See our page New Pattaya Wreck Placements to learn more. During this recent activity some government officials (Tourism Authority of Thailand) and other interested parties (university professors and students) have contacted us and others requesting comments and opinions on numerous related subjects. A group of university professors of economics came by and asked our input as to why the city of Pattaya should help in promoting Pattaya as a dive destination. Below is our input. From: Robert Camp General Manager of Adventure Divers And Chairman of the Board, Pattaya Dive Club To: Dr. Winai Puttakul And Dr. Montchai Pinitjitsamut To: And All Others Interested Benefits of promoting Scuba Diving in Pattaya for Pattaya City 1. Scuba Diving brings Divers. a. Thai divers, predominantly from Bangkok These people bring demand for hotels, food, and do some shopping in Pattaya shops 2. Foreign tourist Divers a. These people bring demand for hotels, food, and do some shopping in Pattaya shops and malls, not to mention patronizing bars and visiting other venues, such as the Sanctuary of Truth, The Nan-Nhuk Gardens, rent motorbikes, Tiger farms, Underwater World, the list goes on. 3. Scuba diving brings employment a. Thai employment Taxi services, Secretaries, Accountants, Dive-masters, Captains, Boat-boys, Cooks, sales people, Equipment Maintenance, Building maintenance, Boat Maintenance, Scuba Instructors (Adventure Divers alone employs 14 Thais, which means that 14 Thai families have income, not to mention the other outside companies that earn from us, for example taxies, food sellers, hardware stores, and more) b. Verlang employment Scuba Instructors (Because have the ability of different Languages) Brings in Income Tax, Social security, Visa payments, Visa Runs, rent apartments or buy, buy cars or motorbikes, pay income tax, social security, patronize bars, buy food, Stereos and TVs, and more. Scuba Instructors bring people who want to learn more about scuba diving. There are many steps of scuba diving to learn. This is a reason why people keep coming back to Pattaya. c. Shop owners (Brings capital to Pattaya) This capital is spent on buying or renting shops, building boats, spending on advertising, buying equipment, buying vehicles……. The list goes on and on. Brings in Income Tax, Social security, Visa payments, Visa Runs, rent or buy apartments, pay income tax, social security, patronize bars, buy food, and more. 4. Scuba shops pay VAT (footnote *1) 5. Other benefits Scuba Diving brings to the community a. Scuba shops generally are environmentally conservation aware, and contribute to conservation projects. It is a common practice for dive shops to sponsor at least one a year a beach or dive site clean-up. This not only has environmental impacts but also financial ones as boats must be rented, equipment, taxies, and more. b. There are a few shops that have sponsored universities studies, Orphan charities, and assisted in tourism promotions for free. c. Through employment of local Thais the Scuba Diving Industry promotes the learning of several foriegn languages for Thais. How can Pattaya City Government and/or TAT (Thailand Authority of Tourism) support the diving Industry and therefore Tourism? 1. TAT can promote Scuba diving in Pattaya the following ways: a. All International regional offices be supplied with literature promoting Scuba diving in Pattaya, not only the Similans and Pucket and Koh Tao as is presently done, to be displayed in all their tourism promotions. b. TAT Bangkok should promote diving in Pattaya to the Thais (especially in Bangkok) as close, convenient, always available (i.e. all year around) .Also, easily available accommodations, good food venues, other activities. 2. Pattaya City can help promote scuba diving the following ways. a. Reefs are being damaged not by divers but by boat anchors. Mooring lines and usage enforcement are imperative if we are to conserve reefs for future generations. There must be some funding for this project found. b. The best way Pattaya area can become a great diving destination through direct human contributions is to make it the wreck diving capital of, first Thailand, then South East Asia. There is already a good start, in that the Navy has verbally pledged to the PDC (Pattaya Dive Club) and the major of Pattaya to contribute 5 ship wrecks over the next 10 years (one every 2 years) starting on the King’s birthday 2011. However, while a good start, not really enough to make it the wreck capital of South East Asia. We need more. There is some competition, especially in the Philippines. Here are some suggestions. 1. Pattaya City has funds that it has specifically allocated to the marine tourism area. Last figure quoted by the major of Pattaya was 16,000,000 Baht. Not a very large sum, but should be enough to purchase, clean up and sink 2 to 4 more wrecks. This should happen as soon as possible so that we can start to promote Pattaya as an up and coming wreck dive destination. 2. The Dept. of Fisheries have an as yet undisclosed budget (to us) for artificial reefs. At present they are spending some of that money on concrete squares which are unaesthetic and ineffective, as can be proved by the project on the south side of Koh Sak. It has been there for over 9 years and is still not promoting coral growth but only a little shell growth and has become a sea urchin hotel. Steel wrecks, on the other hand, can and does promote coral growth and encourages fish schools to live and breed in them, as can be shown by the Wreck HTMS Khram and the Wreck HTMS Kud, which have both been sunk with-in the last 8 years. 3. I think we here in Pattaya were fortunate for the Navy to have verbally pledged 5 new ship wrecks in the next 10 years. However, I think Pattaya City, T.A.T., P.D.C., and anyone else interested in this project, need to get a more concrete commitment from the Navy to actually do this. If, we, as the Pattaya community, promoting the value of scuba diving offered here, are to spend time, money, effort and hopes in promoting Pattaya as a premier dive location then we need an absolute commitment from the Navy that they will do what they have pledged AND we need to find ways to augment the Navy’s commitment with other funding and put more ship wrecks in the Pattaya waters. Remember that more divers and more levels of diving we can offer here in Pattaya will bring more money to our community * 1 VAT and Imports VAT revenues are being lost here in Thailand as the import taxes for scuba goods are so expensive that we cannot compete with Europe and The US on retail prices for the scuba products sold.

One Comment

  1. Thailand Scuba Diving says:
    Tuesday, April 26, 2011 at 5:43pm

    This is exactly I like

    Reply

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