Phuket Immigration says it will be closed to observe one of the Thai national public holidays, Chakri Memorial Day, on April 6. Then the office will be closed from April 13-17 for the annual Songkran break. People should be aware that things like 90 day reporting or visa renewals, due during those dates, should be concluded before the office close for the holiday.
“Thailand observes Chakri Memorial Day as a public holiday on April 6. Officially known as “King Buddha Yodfa Chulaloke the Great Day and Chakri Dynasty Memorial Day”, this holiday commemorates the establishment of the Chakri Dynasty by King Rama I in 1782, over two centuries ago.”
There are three immigration offices in Phuket – the main one at Saphan Hin in Phuket Town, another outpost in Patong along the beach road, and a newer office in Cherngtalay at the Blue Tree complex in Srisoontorn Road.
Meanwhile, the Transport Company, Thailand’s largest bus transport network, has recently announced its plan to operate 4,500 daily trips to accommodate travellers during the upcoming Songkran New Year. This festival is one of the busiest times for travel in Thailand, as many people travel to visit family and friends in other provinces. It’s also measured as the Seven Days of Danger when the country registers its largest road death tolls for the year.
The Transport Company is expecting a 10% increase in passengers during the period of April 10 to 12. After the holiday period, the company expects around 53,000 people to return to Bangkok each day from April 16 to 18, and to meet this demand, the company will provide 3,300 trips to Bangkok.
Sanyalak Panwattanalikhit, the MD of the Transport Company, says passengers should arrive at the bus terminals about two to three hours before the scheduled departure time to avoid missing their trips. He also mentioned that tickets can be purchased from ticket booths at the terminals or through the company’s website, app, or ticket agents nationwide.
The Songkran Festival is an important cultural celebration in Thailand when Thais honour family values, pay respect to seniors, and participate in traditional ceremonies. They also travel a lot, eat a lot and drink a lot of alcohol, making it the worst week in the year for road toll figures.
The main day of celebrations are on the actual Songkran day, April 13, when roads around Phuket will be full of people celebrating with buckets of water and marauding pick-ups hurling water at anyone riding or driving by.