My name is Alwin B.Lias, and I am a freelance tour guide. Up until the COVID-19 pandemic I was working for tourist companies… Feel Phuket (hiking), Siam Adventure World (snorkelling) and Spice Roads (cycling).
COVID-19 has been a nightmare for my friends working in the tourism industry and me. If you work in a hotel, your salary has been slashed, or you are on leave without pay. Freelance guides suffer greatly as tour companies are closed with no opening date in sight. We only get paid when we work. Some businesses will not survive.
My colleagues and I hope that when the travel ban is lifted, the tourists will start travelling again very quickly. In the past, Thailand has had events that impact lives and tourism, such as the Asian Tsunami in 2004. However, between December 2005 and January 2006, tourism was not affected as much as this same period 2019 - 2020.
Although things are difficult, I try to look at the positives. Even though so many people in Phuket are suffering, this may be a chance for nature to recover from decades of non-stop, mass tourism. We hear news of turtles, reef sharks, and many other animals returning to the beaches and shoreline. This is great for the earth and will definitely be beneficial when tourism starts again.
I am only able to work as a tour guide as I have English as a second language. Less privileged children need to be able to learn English as it allows them to connect to people from many other countries. When looking for work, English skills will enable them to apply for jobs with better pay.
Siam Commercial Bank - Patong Branch
SWIFT Code: SICOTHBK
Savings A/C Name: Phuket Has Been Good To Us Foundation
Savings A/C #: 601-2-71944-7
You can also donate directly to PHBGTU's money pot here.