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Up to 2.7 million Thai travel, hospitality and tourism workers unemployed by September

Jack Burton



PHOTO: New Straits Times
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The president of the Thai Tourism Industry Council says confidence among Thailand’s tourism business operators fell to the lowest level in a decade during the second quarter this year, with about 2.6 million workers already unemployed and about another 100,000 expected to be laid off in Q3 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. The gloomy forecast is the result of a survey of 770 tourism business operators between May 10 – 25.

He acknowledged that the sector has been hard hit by government lockdown measures enacted to stem the spread of the contagion, the closure of many business and leisure activities. The impacts caused domestic tourism to contract by about 99%, “because all tourist destinations were closed and there are no foreign tourists at all”. Although the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand’s ban on international arrivals was officially lifted today, foreign tourists are still effectively prohibited.

Tourism operators are more confident about a slight improvement in Q3, as the government has eased most domestic restrictions, and there is anticipation that as many as 400,000 foreigners will visit or return to Thailand in specific categories, generating revenues estimated about 20 billion baht, but still 96% lower than average.

“Unless Thailand opens its borders to allow foreign tourists to enter the country again the future will be even bleaker, because most of the sector’s businesses have no cash flow and no access to funding.”

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

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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.



  1. Avatar

    Jim Reid

    July 1, 2020 at 6:04 pm

    This is not fair and its sad so many people are out of work and so many businesses have been forced to close because of this plandemic. In my opinion the owner of the patent should be made compensate all the businesses and people for their loss this might discourage this carry on.Its time evil people like this were severely dealt with for causing such a catastrophe and receive the death penalty for all the people they have murdered.

    • Avatar


      July 1, 2020 at 7:17 pm

      Jim, If you think that evil people will be held to account for what they’ve done you’re dreaming. They do what they do because they know they wont be held accountable and they’re given cover by others in power for the very same reason.

  2. Avatar

    Ken Graham

    July 1, 2020 at 10:14 pm

    And remember that they are going to let Chinese in who are the ones that caused all this pain in the first place by lying about the virus. Chinese should be banned from every country.

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    July 1, 2020 at 10:35 pm

    Still this madness carries on, when there is no more need for it.
    There is not even 60 dead from the virus, yet the whole country is suffering economically and from the petty restrictions.
    The only way to stop it is for the Thais to revolt.
    They will not be given the chance to vote these clowns out.

  4. Avatar


    July 2, 2020 at 1:54 am

    There we have it, don’t you just love a scamdemic… Stop this Covid-19 nonsense! Get back to normal, because this whole pandemic is one big hoax!

  5. Avatar


    July 2, 2020 at 3:35 am

    I have not seen my wife and child for 6 months now. Thanks to China. Sadly they wont open the borders any time soon for people like my self. I skype with my thai girlfriend and son every day but it breaks my heart.

  6. Avatar


    July 2, 2020 at 11:41 am

    foot meet bullet – other foot meet bullet. might as well put the barrel to the temple.

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