The "Sandbox" or "Phuket Sandbox" program, launched for tourists on July 1 and extended on November 1, 2021, revived the real estate market, which had been dependent on the domestic tourism sector for almost two years.
According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), 59,689 international tourists visited the state under the sandbox scheme from July 1 to October 31. Residential real estate activity also increased with the return of traffic.
Despite growing demand, Phuket’s housing supply is low and limited, as several new projects have been launched over the past two years due to Covid. According to CBRE research, the total number of newly commissioned properties - villas and condominiums - decreased by 98% year-on-year in 2020 and by another 34% year-on-year in the first half of 2021.
At the same time, there is still a high demand for some premium projects in the prestigious areas of Phuket. Thus, some developers decided not to offer generous discounts. This is one of the reasons why prices for ultra-luxury real estate, which fell at the beginning of the pandemic, quickly recovered.
In the future, CBRE expects an increase in the number of international visitors to Phuket, as travel restrictions are eased, to attract more tourists and investors to buy holiday homes on the island.