Phuket Jet Ski Scams
Jet ski fraud has become rampant in Phuket. In a common scenario, the operator claims that the traveler renting the Jet ski has somehow damaged the machine. Then a demand is made for compensation.
Besides the damages often being imaginary, the price of repairs may be 10 - 20 times the actual cost to make the repair. Resistance to paying the fraudulent claims may well result in abuses ranging to violence. Threats of violence are common. Many residents of Phuket claim that police are involved with the operators.
Phuket Jet Ski Insurance
High profile international media warnings finally resulted in the requirement for all operators to maintain insurance. That may mitigate some issues, but experience says that unscrupulous operators will continue to prey on unsuspecting tourists.
The reason is simple. Insurance providers will likely have inspected the Jet skis they insure and will not pay courageous damage claims.
Jet ski Rental Recommendations
We actually recommend that you vote with your Baht and not do business with the Jet ski cartel. But if you insist, please attempt to limit your exposure.
- Many operators will ask for your passport as security. Never leave you passport with an operator. Carry a copy and write a notation on that copy that specifies the date and purpose of use. Make sure to get it back after your bill is settled. If the operator refuses to accept a copy .. walk away.
- Inspect the machine carefully. Note any scratch, crack or mechanical damage. Point out those blemishes to the operator then photograph them
- Pay attention to the sound of the engine and how the machine handles. If something seems wrong, return the machine immediately.
If you have a conflict over your rental, call the Tourist Police at 219-878 .. call 1699 for emergencies.