Samui Plus roll-out is first step in reviving the destination's tourism industry
Wednesday, 14th July 2021
Source : Bill Barnett - Managing Director, C9 Hotelworks

Stressed hotels pin hopes on return of foreign visitors Samui hotel pipeline.

'Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, Koh Samui's demand growth relied heavily on Samui International Airport and Surat Thani International Airport's airlift The number of total passengers at Samui International Airport hit 2,417,246 in 2019 and dropped down to 869,235 passengers in 2020.

Koh Samui is expected to gradually emerge from the pandemic as a desirable upscale boutique destination for regional and international visitors. One favorable factor is it has avoided the crush of mass market hotels that have risen in many other Thai and Southeast Asian resort locations.

Due to airlift restrictions , low-cost airlines use Surat Thani International Airport on the mainland The growing prominence of the Surat Thani airport as a secondary hub has improved accessibility to Koh Samui and increased broader access for the island

Presently, there are 629 registered accommodation establishments with 23,797 keys in Koh Samui Between now and 2025 , there are eight confirmed pipeline projects identified, with an additional 1 ,443 keys coming on stream. Based our research , the flow of incoming properties remains largely intact, though some projects are delayed.

Based on the Thailand Ministry of Tourism and Sports timeline, the Samui Plus program is scheduled to kick off on July 15th Koh Samui , Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao are planned to reopen tor fully-vaccinated travelers Koh Samui's success going forward is anticipated to be leverage~, by the recent Phuket Sandbox opening progress.'


  • Pre-pandemic, there were thirteen and four direct international flights to Samui and Surat Thani InternationalAirports, respectively
  • While negative growth is expected across all segments, domestic demand is generally higher in upscale resorts.
  • Bangkok Airways has issued an option to the Samui Airport Property Fund (SPF) to terminate its operation . This is likely a  commercial issue and not expected to disrupt airport services.

Forward Outlook:

  • In mid-July 2021 , Bangkok Airways is resuming the Phuket - Samui route to accommodate visitors under Phuket Sandbox and Samui Plus traffic.
  • Reopening of the strategic Samui - Singapore and Samui - Hong Kong air routes currently have no confirmed dates for resumption.
  • Hotel transaction activity is expected to reach increased levels in 03 and 04 of this year given the prolonged impact of the pandemic on hotel owners carrying high debt levels.

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