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“Travel bubbles” to require minimum 2 week stay

Jack Burton

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“Travel bubbles” to require minimum 2 week stay | Thaiger
PHOTO: Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakan - Nation Thailand

“Travel bubble” tourists who visit Thailand during its soft and timid reopening phase, tentatively scheduled for August, may have to spend 14 days in designated areas. Then, a negative test for Covid-19 after 2 weeks would free them up to go anywhere in the Kingdom. Thailand’s tourism and sports minister says he’s met with PM Prayut Chan-o-cha about creating travel bubbles for tourists, requiring them to plan trips with a minimum 14 day stay.

But instead of being kept in 14 day quarantine, leisure tourists could travel within 5 designated areas: Chiang Mai, Koh Samui, Krabi, Phuket and Pattaya. After 2 weeks, visitors would be retested to ensure they are virus-free. They would then be allowed to travel freely to other destinations.

The 5 designated areas were determined after the Tourism Authority of Thailand conducted a survey with locals. Some 74% of respondents agreed with introducing travel bubbles, with strict measures.

The tourism minister says he still hopes to launch the travel bubble scheme with low-risk countries in August, and that domestic tourism alone cannot fully revive the battered tourism industry. Domestic tourism activity makes up about 40-45% of tourism revenue.

“It is important to bring inbound tourist to help fill a big vacant spot in tourism revenue.”

As the government mulls the travel bubble scheme, the tourism ministry has decided on a new strategy… targeting rich tourists seeking privacy and social distancing in the post Covid era, rather than try to attract large numbers of lower-spending tourists. Once the country’s borders are reopened and so-called travel bubbles are agreed upon, marketing efforts will be geared toward rich tourists who want holidays with minimal risks.

SOURCES: Bangkok Post | Chiang Rai Times

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Richard Barker

    Saturday, July 11, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    The so called “rich tourists” don’t spend the money where the Thai people need it most

  2. Avatar

    business as usual

    Saturday, July 11, 2020 at 3:16 pm

    In fairness, it does seem sensible to not allow a rush of tourists.
    …and to be a bit more selective.

    We can see how since rioting in the US, the rates have gone back up; and in the UK, where people generally like to cut corners, the rate is not where it should be.
    You look at densely populated countries around the world, and you see rates and mortality climbing – and that’s only where there’s data. Clearly Brazil and India are getting more data than Indonesia and Philippines.

    However, the idea of “rich tourists” is a bit mythical. Thailand has made a lot of profit from British tourists buying lots of booze and doing lots of activities.
    Other nationalities aren’t so profitable.
    Having expensive accommodation reduces the potential for income from other activities when the guests are there, which undermines the whole business model.
    Thailand is competing with Spain for tourist cash, because it’s a similar offering: beaches, sunshine, food, culture; but Spain is a lot nearer to the main customer base.

    I just don’t see Russian, Chinese and Indian tourists being as good value as western european and anglosphere tourists. All the China market has to offer is volume, but the actual yield per tourist is meagre, and in the COVID age, volume is a problem.

    Perhaps a better strategy is to go for family tourism and the retiree market that has synergy with medical tourism. If you don’t want to rely on the youth and boozing market, you need markets with spin off sales.

    • Avatar

      mr sparky

      Monday, July 13, 2020 at 4:11 pm

      get your facts right before posting mate! the rise occuring here in tbe usa is not from the protesters. its from opening up too soon, (bars) (resturants), (clubs) , when the hospitals asked those testing positive were they protesting the people all replied, no but they traveled to hot spots and went out clubbing bar hopping, beaches. NO ONE WAS A PROTESTER. stop blaming protesters ok mate. USA tried to open up much tooooo soon.

  3. Avatar

    Fred

    Saturday, July 11, 2020 at 3:36 pm

    @Richard
    TAT and Immigration are not interested in “Thai people need it most” but in there own pockets. Don’t call them “Ma. ia”, just call them “cor.pt” because that is Thailands “every day business”.

    I stay here now for 7 months, still pay every days bills and that way supporting the Thai locals. I have no problem with that, but if they do no further automatic Visa extension – as it looks now – I will leave back to Europe (if possible), and no other tourist will “replace me”, so the few income the locals still have (from stranded tourists) will brake away.
    On the other side, Immigration – because of the former two automatic Extensions – has no additional income.
    There are already rumors about the extra fees stranded tourists have to pay to receive 3+12 month Visas.

    An other point is what tourists are telling potential Thailand tourists when they return to there home countrys. And believe it or not, many of those do not want to pay extra fees to Immigration (i’ve no problem with that, it’s Part of there culture).

    Anyway, next so called “high season” will be a “low season” or even a “no season”. Thousends of thousends Thai will have no work / no income, resulting in an increase of street crime.
    If TAT and Immigration are smart, they will do anything to atrack ALL kind of tourists.
    Just my two cents

  4. Avatar

    Thomas W

    Saturday, July 11, 2020 at 8:48 pm

    I guess this is just the usual bla bla – again, nothing will happen as half of July is already over. After being stuck over 200 days outside Thailand (I work FIFO) I just want to see my family. If you live in a remote camp, than quarantine is the least problem (basically the same as work), just let people/families see each other again. Tourists won’t come back in a hurry anyway, since they scared them all away.

  5. Avatar

    Kevin B.

    Sunday, July 12, 2020 at 3:03 am

    what’s considered a rich tourist? i rent apartments for months from at 800-1200 USD per month and think that’s enough of a contribution. then there’s food, drink, and entertainment.

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Jack Burton is an American writer, broadcaster, linguist and journalist who has lived in Asia since 1987. A native of the state of Georgia, he attended the The University of Georgia's Henry Grady School of Journalism, which hands out journalism's prestigious Peabody Awards. His works have appeared in The China Post, The South China Morning Post, The International Herald Tribune and many magazines throughout Asia and the world. He is fluent in Mandarin and has appeared on television and radio for decades in Taiwan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau.

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The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more

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The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | Thaiger

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The Thiager and its sister company Tadoo, have announced they will enter a strategic partnership with the Bangkok-based fintech company, Masii.

Having joined forces with Masii, The Thaiger aims to provide its 6 million-plus monthly users with exclusive deals and packages such as the Thailand re-entry package, comprising of the Certificate of Entry (COE), Covid-19 Travel Insurance and a Covid-19 Test.

Sapir Matmon, of Tadoo, says “This tie-up will allow us to provide our readers with all-inclusive packages specifically designed to make the whole process of coming back to Thailand as simple as possible. And by booking through us, all service fees will be waived – a saving of more than 1,000 Baht. We’re confident you won’t find a better price in the market right now.”

The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | News by Thaiger

“We can provide everything you need to enter Thailand hassle-free and within 12 hours, which is the fastest in the market.” Says Maxwell Meyer, CEO of Masii.

Covid-19 has drastically accelerated the industry’s movement toward shifting products and services online.

Sapir says “We are tremendously pleased to welcome the Masii team and work alongside Maxwell, as one of the stars of the local fintech scene.”

Tadoo, The Thiager’s sister company, has also teamed up with Masii on their Thai price comparison platform, tadoo.co, which offers a similar range of products including, insurance, finance, internet, and mobile.

The goal of Tadoo is to bring clarity to the Thai market and assist consumers in making better-informed choices by offering a quick and convenient solution for getting the products they want without the hassle.

For more information on the Thailand Re-Entry Full Package, click HERE.

The Thaiger joins forces with Masii to bring you hassle-free Thailand re-entry packages and much more | News by Thaiger

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Aviation authority calling for 20,000 vaccine doses for crew, ground staff

Maya Taylor

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Aviation authority calling for 20,000 vaccine doses for crew, ground staff | Thaiger
PHOTO: Christian Junker on Flickr

The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand is calling for vaccine doses to protect around 20,000 airline crew and ground staff before the country re-opens to international tourists. The CAAT says it’s vital that those working in the aviation industry are protected and has submitted its request to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

According to Suthipong Kongpool from the CAAT, there are around 20,000 airline employees, including crew and ground staff, who will need to be vaccinated. As 2 doses are required, a total of 40,000 doses are needed to fully protect staff. The Bangkok Post reports that the CAAT will meet on Thursday to review the aviation sector’s readiness for when the country re-opens without international arrivals having to quarantine.

Suthipong says they are seeking enough vaccine doses to protect employees of Thai-registered carriers.

“It’s a confidence-building measure for tourists and those providing the services to them.”

From July, the southern island of Phuket will be the first part of the country to waive quarantine for vaccinated international arrivals, subject to 70% of local residents being vaccinated. The “sandbox” project is a pilot programme that will be expanded to other areas if it proves successful. Between October and the end of the year, 5 other provinces – Phang Nga, Surat Thani, Krabi, Chon Buri, and Chiang Mai – are expected to adopt the programme. Officials hope to be able to re-open the country fully from January 2022.

According to the CAAT, the first foreign visitors expected to return to Phuket will be Chinese tourists, given that country’s success in managing the pandemic. Meanwhile, the CAAT says Thailand will see a 7% increase in air traffic this month compared to last, with a total of 36,150 domestic and international flights.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan

Maya Taylor

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Labour union angry over changes to Thai Airways staff contracts under rehab plan | Thaiger
PHOTO: Wikimedia

Union representatives are questioning changes made to the employment terms of Thai Airways staff as part of the national carrier’s debt-restructuring plan. The labour union claims the changes have removed or diluted several staff entitlements and welfare benefits, pointing the finger at acting president, Chansin Treenuchagron, who signed the orders.

The union is calling on the Department of Labour Protection and Welfare to review the changes to check if they align with a debt-restructuring plan submitted to the Central Bankruptcy Court. According to a Bangkok Post report, the union believes the signed orders may go against the terms of the rehab plan currently being reviewed by creditors. They include an order related to the company’s new organisational structure, as well as the screening of workers who will continue to be employed by the carrier during and after the rehab process.

Union representatives accuse the airline of changing the terms and conditions of employee contracts, meaning weaker welfare benefits. They are asking the DLPW to confirm if the changes comply with the 1940 Bankruptcy Act, the 1975 Labour Relations Act, and the 1998 Labour Protection Act. The union says that if the changes are found to violate the acts, Chansin should be ordered to cancel the orders and draw up new employment terms that comply with the airline’s rehab plan and with employment law.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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