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Restaurant operators accept rules for re-opening dine-in services



PHOTO: Flickr/Michael Cory

Restaurant operators are happy to accept new rules for re-opening as laid out by the Public Health Ministry, if it means they can get back to business. The measures are strict and include the need for all customers to show proof of full vaccination. According to a Bangkok Post report, the re-opening of dine-in services would be done under a “sandbox” concept across the 29 strictly-controlled dark red provinces.

The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration meets tomorrow, when the Public Health Ministry is expected to propose the restaurant sandbox scheme. It will require all restaurant employees to be fully vaccinated and to undergo testing with antigen test kits every 5 – 7 days. The Bangkok Post reports that restaurants will also be required to operate in well-ventilated spaces and ask customers to show proof of their vaccination status.

Despite the numerous requirements, restaurant operators say they’re willing to accept the new rules. Boonyong Tansakul from Zen Corporation, which runs the Zen, AKA, and On the Table brands, says an important condition of the scheme is that restaurants will not be ordered to close again should another wave of the virus emerge.

“Under the scheme, restaurants that can follow the guidelines would get signage from the government to show their restaurant’s safety, and they are not subject to closure if new waves of the pandemic occur. More importantly, under the proposed guidelines, we no longer get a headache if the government’s inconsistent restriction measures are introduced in the future.”

Kannika Chinprasithchai from the Black Canyon chain says she too is receptive to the new rules, adding that customers are ready to eat out once more.

“We believe that consumers are ready to eat out at restaurants, although they might feel a bit inconvenienced by some guidelines.”

Her sentiments are echoed by Nath Vongphanich from the Central Restaurants Group, who says the strict measures will also increase customer confidence.

“If the sandbox concept is used, we are ready to gradually re-open our restaurants. It may take time to draw consumers back to our restaurants in the beginning, but we believe that our takeaway business will absolutely improve and help boost sales to the company.”

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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