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Coronavirus Thailand

Tourism ministry floats long-stay travel packages

The Thaiger

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Tourism ministry floats long-stay travel packages | The Thaiger
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The Covid-19 outbreak has crushed Thailand’s tourism industry, already battered by a flat high season in the previous year, and with the national ban on international arrivals extended until at least May 30, and domestic travel still heavily restricted, the situation isn’t likely to improve soon. But the coronavirus crisis, like all things, will pass, and Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Ministry is proposing long-stay packages for foreign tourists seeking “disease-free destinations”.

The head of the ministry, Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, says that while international tourists are expected to gradually return after the domestic market revives, Thailand needs an appropriate marketing strategy to cope with the new, post-Covid norm of travellers.

“The ministry is working with the Tourism Authority of Thailand to set up a model which will attract a specific group of travellers to visit chosen areas.”

The perennial favourite island resorts of Phuket, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan will be the pilot destinations to welcome high end international tourists.

“Because those destinations are only reachable via limited gateways, provincial authorities can ensure thorough screening of incoming visitors and provide more comprehensive prevention measures against the potential import of the virus compared to other major destinations, such as Bangkok, Pattaya and Chiang Mai.”

TAT offices abroad are now courting the long-stay market, which normally spends more than average tourists, while 4- and 5-star hotels are promoting packages to their regular guests.

“The outbreak allows Thai tourism to shift its focus to quality tourists rather than quantity.”

Disease-free tourism packages are set to launch during the fourth quarter of 2020 which is when tourists from Western countries usually seek warmer destinations.

But TAT governor Yuthasak Supasorn warns that when the pandemic in Thailand is finally brought under control, international travellers must not become the cause of a second wave of infection. Yuthasak believes once domestic tourism resumes, locals will travel in smaller groups, and that land transportation will be the popular choice, thanks to lower oil prices.

New health screening practices for tourists before flying to Thailand may become the standard in the future. Proposals include “immunity passports” or risk-free certificates.

“If the tourism industry cannot bounce back stronger from the downturn, it will be difficult to restore the overall economy.”

SOURCE: Bangok Post

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Coronavirus Thailand

Bangkok hospitals use baby face shields, US health officials say it could be dangerous

Caitlin Ashworth

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Bangkok hospitals use baby face shields, US health officials say it could be dangerous | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Nation Thailand

While Bangkok hospitals say they are protecting newborn babies from the coronavirus with baby-sized face shields, health authorities in the US disagree with the move, and even claim it could be dangerous.

The US Centre of Disease Control says an infant face shield could increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome as well as suffocation or strangulation.

Since infants and newborns often toss and turn in bed, the nose and mouth could become blocked by the face shield and suffocate, according to a CDC report on the matter.

“Parts of the shield can also get caught around the neck and cause them to suffocate.”

They say that there is no data supporting the use of infant face shields for protection against the coronavirus.

SOURCE: US Centre of Disease Control

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Pattaya

Pattaya’s beaches are still a ‘no go’ area this month

Caitlin Ashworth

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Pattaya’s beaches are still a ‘no go’ area this month | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Pattaya City Law Enforcement/pattayacity2535

Don’t go to Pattaya’s beaches unless you’re willing go to jail or pay a hefty fine. Starting tomorrow, the city’s beaches will be closed until the end of May in an effort to prevent socialising and to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

Pattaya’s police posted photos on Facebook of the taped-off beaches and warning signs.

“Those who try to access the beach could face a year in jail or an up to 100,000 baht fine. People and tourists are prohibited from gathering in the areas between 9am and 9pm during the three-week period.”

However, people are still allowed to walk and exercise on the sidewalks adjacent to the beaches. The closed beach areas include… Pattaya beach, Jomtien beach, Phra Thamnak beach, Cosy beach, Wong Amat beach, Krathing Rai beach, Lan Phor Na Kluea public park and the Bali Hai pier area.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

Pattaya's beaches are still a 'no go' area this month | News by The Thaiger

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Coronavirus Thailand

10 arrested in Chon Buri for house party in violation of Emergency Decree

Jack Burton

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10 arrested in Chon Buri for house party in violation of Emergency Decree | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Naew Na

Police in Chon Buri province’s Sattahip subdistrict, south of Pattaya, raided a party last night at a house with 10 people, most of them from out of town and described as domestic tourists. The gathering was a direct violation of the Emergency Decree enacted to stop the spread of Covid-19

Na Jomtien police were notified by a “concerned citizen” that there was a noisy party at a house in a housing estate at 9:30pm. They arrived at the house, knocked on the door and were greeted by 37 year old Paruehat Tampanon, who said he’s renting the house for several days, and that he and his friends were staying there for 2 days.

Na Jomtien police discovered 9 other people inside the house, 2 of whom tested positive for illegal drugs, police say, without naming the specific drugs. Many bottles of alcoholic and other beverages were found.

Paruehat claimed he did not know that Chon Buri still has strict social distancing measure in place and bans private parties. He also claimed all 10 people know each other and live with each other so there was be no threat of spreading the virus.

The owner of the house, 35 year old Piyanuch Ignatov, was charged with illegally operating a hotel and disobeying a Chon Buri order. (Rentals of fewer than 30 days are technically not allowed under Thai law.)

All those arrested face stiff Emergency Decree penalties, which means fines of up to 100,000 baht and/or up to 2 years in jail.

SOURCES: The Pattaya News | Naew Na

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