Connect with us

Tourism

Kiss the high season goodbye – Thailand’s long wait continues

Thaiger

Published 

 on 

Just as last year’s high season was wrapping up, the Covid-19 pandemic became real and much of the world closed borders back in March. Thailand hoteliers, tour operators and airlines had to endure a very quiet low season, obviously a lot lower than usual. But with the next high season upon us the prospects of a sudden surge of tourists has evaporated with announcements over the past couple of weeks.

Thousands of businesses that were holding out for a bounce back over the traditional busy tourist season will now have to wait even longer.The mandatory 14 day quarantine and copious paperwork, despite all the best intentions, is simply too much of a burden for the vast majority of overseas visitors that still have the capacity and desire to travel to Thailand.

The proof is in the pudding and the uptake of the much-hyped Special Tourist Visa has been dismal. Here’s the problem…The hospitality and tourism industry are demanding ways to re-open the borders and manage the Covid situation into the future. Meanwhile Thai government officials seem to be waiting for the magic pill, the arrival of a viable vaccine, to provide the safety net for a widespread re-opening of Thailand’s borders to occur.

While all this is happening, the Thai government is caught inside a travel bubble of its own making. A travel bubble of ONE.

The local solution for a tourism reboot can only do SO much. Whilst Thais are being stirred out of their provinces with stimulus packages to stay in hotels and eat at restaurants, most aren’t travelling far and the hopes for a domestic-tourism-led recovery are fanciful at best.

Nothing short of a broad re-opening of the borders, along with dropping many of the restrictions and paperwork, will save Thailand tourism. But the country’s health officials are saying the risk is too great, especially as much of the world is now experiencing a major surge in new cases and deaths caused by Covid-19.

And even if they fling open the borders tomorrow, who would be coming? The volume of the world’s travellers has been reduced to a trickle and, around the world, international flights are few, and expensive. Some of Thailand’s larger tour companies and hotel groups will be able to hang in there, surviving on limited re-openings of rooms or just keeping the doors locked and sacking staff. Smaller businesses have either already closed up shop, or will not be able to weather any further extension of the tourist drought.

In Chiang Mai the weather is starting to cool with crisp mornings and evenings making the northern city a popular tourist hot spot through December, January and February. In Phuket, the wet season is over and the skies glow bright blue with cooling breezes and long stretches of clear beaches. In Bangkok the Christmas decorations are already up at shopping malls awaiting the flood of international tourists for the high season.But the fate of this high season is already sealed and the return-to-normal simply isn’t going to happen.

Whilst much of the tourism and hospitality industry thought that this year’s 2020/2021 high season would signal the start of a ‘new beginning’, it’s just turned out to be the beginning of an even longer haul for Thailand’s industry players, and the thousands they employ.

 

Want more Thailand news from the Thaiger family?

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS for instant updates on your mobile
📝️ Join the conversation on Thaiger Talk - discuss news & life in our Thailand forums
📧 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🔔 Subscribe to or Join our YouTube channel for daily video updates

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand12 hours ago

Tourism officials eye August reopening under “Pattaya Move On” travel scheme

Thailand13 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Covid vaccine for foreigners, PM “not going anywhere”, Boss update | June 15

Best of13 hours ago

Top 8 Affordable Hotels to stay in Bangkok

Phuket Sandbox July 1st

days
hours
minutes
seconds

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in July - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages in June!

Sponsored by image

Thailand13 hours ago

Central Bankruptcy Court approves Thai Airways debt restructuring plan

Best of13 hours ago

Top 5 secret islands and beaches in Thailand

Best of14 hours ago

5 best national parks in Phuket

Thailand14 hours ago

Australian man arrested for alleged child sex abuse in Thai border town

Best of14 hours ago

10 best fruits and vegetables in Thailand

Thailand14 hours ago

3 dead in 3 truck crash in Surat Thani

Thailand15 hours ago

Bangkok Post and Fazwaz join together to galvanise property listings platform

Bangkok15 hours ago

CCSA has yet to begin talks on lifting alcohol ban at Bangkok restaurants

Coronavirus (Covid-19)15 hours ago

Yala enters lockdown today

Thailand16 hours ago

Thai police say they’ve gathered “strong evidence” on transnational drug trade

Phuket16 hours ago

Indonesian fisherman rescued after 9 days adrift at sea

Thailand17 hours ago

More than 100 cats rescued from owner

Thailand3 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism3 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism4 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand4 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism4 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending