Hi TLP, with your post you imply that these onward-flight reservation companies are providing a service that is illegal. But that's NOT the case. As I wrote they provide a fully legit service and the flight-reservations they make on your behalf are genuine. You can check the 6-digit reservation code on the airline website where they made the reservation and you will see that it is there. So there is actually no way that your Thai-bound airline or Thai border-immigration can object as your flight-reservation is REAL.
It would be akin to booking an outbound fllight yourself and once in Thailand cancelling it, in case you want to stay longer than 30 days on a VisaExempt entry (e.g. by applying at your local Imm Office for a 30-day extension of stay). When doing such booking yourself and later cancelling it, the costs will often be higher than the 10-16 US $ dollar the onward-flight reservation companies charge you. But there are even some airlines (I thought one of them being Cathay Pacific) that allow cancelling your flight-reservation at no cost.
I don't even know what that means....
My point was if you want how Phuket was 100 yrs ago or even 40yrs ago is there still is a bunch of places to go
My post was not meant as anything other than pointing that out