ETB Travel News: When and why did you join the industry?
I joined the industry in 1970 and spent 29 Years with Diethelm and was the first Thai national to obtain Executive Management status within the company. In 1999 I then went on to form CBS Travel Asia and it has grown ever since beyond my expectations.
ETB Travel News: What do you like most about your job?
Travel is a vibrant business and provides us with a platform to meet many different characters from all walks of life. I enjoy this diversity as much today as I did when I first started in the business 43 Years ago.
ETB Travel News: What’s one of the biggest achievements of your career so far?
By being successful in business this has allowed me to provide for my family and educate my children abroad, this by far has been my biggest achievement. All three of my children obtained Master Degrees from the UK.
ETB Travel News: What’s the best advice ever given to you and who gave it?
The best advice I ever received was from the late Mr Hans Tuggener (Former General Manager of Diethelm Travel Thailand) work hard, be sincere, be honest and keep your promise”.
ETB Travel News: Who do you admire and see as a role model in the travel industry?
I admire Mr. Luzi Matzig (CEO of Asian Trails), as he is an incredible leader with brilliant vision, very professional and I learnt so much from him which I still apply to my business this very day.
ETB Travel News: What destinations are on your travel bucket list?
I have been very fortunate in that I have travelled the world and have had the opportunity to see many exciting places, I cannot honestly say to you that there is one particular place I wish to visit. Perhaps revisiting Brazil, that was one of my dream destinations.
ETB Travel News: What’s a memorable travel experience you’ve had (good or bad)?
A bad experience I had, was whilst flying from Pagan to Yangon with Burma Airways in 1995. The aircraft was a Fokker Turbo Prop and one of the engines, propeller, stopped, as a result we had to turn back and I really thought we were going to land in a rice paddy, but fortunately we made it back safely to the airport.
ETB Travel News: What are three things you always take with you when travelling?
2. Credit Card
3. iPad & Blackberry
ETB Travel News: Name someone famous you’d like to travel with and a destination you’d like to go with them.
I really don’t know to be honest with you, but when I do travel, I like to do so with close friends. I enjoy visiting places with exceptional food such as Dubai, Japan, Korea, London, Madrid, Beijing and Shanghai.
ETB Travel News: What would you like to see change within the industry and why?
I would like to see better financial and regulatory control of travel companies and in particular in foreign countries outside of Thailand.. Thailand has a strong regulatory system of licensing and memberships, unfortunately not all countries have the same or similar regulations. For example, CBS Travel Asia was sending considerable business to Travel Asia (HK) in Hong Kong, owned and operated by Mr Owen Yau. In May of this year we discovered the company was going bankrupt owing many companies including myown, large sums of money. Shortly after closing the business we then discovered that the owner has poped up at a competing company PC Tours & Travel Hong Kong. I believe that there should be better accountability for such incidences and better protection for the companies who deal with othercompanies. This point unfortunately is a common problem within our industryacross the globe. I would also like to see more protective laws in place for tourists in all countries of the world.