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Airbnb shares research and best practices for Thailand’s short-term rental industry

Maya Taylor

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Airbnb shares research and best practices for Thailand’s short-term rental industry | The Thaiger
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Yesterday The Thaiger published a story about Airbnb, supplied through The Nation, that contained a number of inaccuracies. We now publish the entire original media release from Airbnb…

Airbnb has today released its proposed regulatory principles for short-term accommodation which would support the Thai Government’s objectives of making Thailand the premier tourist destination in Asia and one of the top tourist destinations globally.

Driven by a desire for more local, unique and authentic travel experiences, the Airbnb community in Thailand continues to grow from strength to strength. Local hospitality entrepreneurs are choosing Airbnb to earn extra income or grow their business giving guests the choice to stay in boutique hotels, vacation rentals or local homes. By helping attract and host more guests, the Airbnb community is growing and diversifying Thai tourism.

Following positive meetings with multiple government departments and industry stakeholders, Airbnb has put forward suggested regulatory principles for short-term accommodation in Thailand. These principles would support local priorities and reflect Thailand’s unique needs, and are consistent with best practices for regulating short-term accommodation regionally and globally.

The regulatory principles also reflect latest research, conducted by Expedition Strategiesin late 2018, which found 88% of Thai people would support residents in their neighbourhoods sharing their homes, 89% would consider using short-term accommodation in the future and 84% believe short-term accommodation is good for communities because it will bring tourists to more areas where they will spend money.

Airbnb’s proposed regulatory principles include:

  • Simple and online national-level registration – A simple, swift and online registration system for short-term accommodation to ensure compliance and promote high safety standards.
  • Differentiated regulation – A differentiated – rather than one-size-fits-all – approach to regulation which distinguishes between the various types of short-term accommodation activity. For example, regulations should differentiate between someone sharing a room in their home, their own home occasionally or someone with a vacation rental for full commercial purpose.
  • Industry-wide approach – There should be an industry-wide approach to regulation and close cooperation between all industry participants and regulators in implementing regulations.
  • Tough but fair rules for bad behaviour – The overwhelming majority of hosts and guests are good neighbours and respectful travelers, but there should be penalties that target extremely rare instances of bad behaviour.

“Airbnb wants to be a good and responsible partner to Government and do what we can to help Thailand achieve its tourism objectives. Already, our local community is helping grow and diversify the Thai tourism industry and spread the benefits of tourism to local communities across the country, particularly those in emerging destinations like Buriram,” Airbnb’s Head of Public Policy for Southeast Asia Mich Goh said.

“For some time, we have listened to local authorities and sought to better understand their priorities. We appreciate the balanced and forward-looking approach the Thai Government has considered to take in developing a modern regulatory framework for short-term accommodation.”

“We respectfully believe the regulatory principles for short-term accommodation we have put forward support the Government’s objectives and strike the right balance. We look forward to continuing to work constructively with the Thai Government to develop regulation that would work in Thailand.”

Earlier this year, Airbnb released new data which found the local host and guest community generated over $33.8 billion baht in estimated direct economic impact in Thailand in 2018, and on average Airbnb guests say 46% of their spending occurs in the neighbourhoods where they stay.

Airbnb is also supporting the growth of emerging destinations in Thailand. In 2018, the number of Airbnb guest arrivals visiting emerging destinations in Thailand grew by 53% year-on-year. Recently, Airbnb launched a new campaign, Sustainable Travel with Airbnb: Beyond Big Cities” to promote emerging destinations such as Buriram.

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Thailand

Government in control of Mor Chana app, says user data will be kept private

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Government in control of Mor Chana app, says user data will be kept private | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Thai PBS World

The Thai government is taking full control of the Mor Chana application, which is used to trace Covid-19 infections and alert users if they are in a high risk area. The Digital Economy and Society Minister says the government will still be working closely with the app developers, adding that users can be assured that their data will be kept private.

The Mor Chana Volunteer Team, the app developer, made a post on their Facebook page saying the Mor Chana contact tracing application will be 100% under government management and control from now. The team will be responsible only for the open source programme development. The post has prompted public comments about the reason behind the application handover to the government.

Minister Buddhipongse Punnakanta says the government will take full responsibility for the application management and control measures, but the collaboration with the app developers will continue. The developer team’s announcement is just to inform the public about the app.

He also says some app functions will be redesigned and adjusted to be more friendly to use and won’t violate users’ data privacy. Personal information such as users’ names and mobile numbers for registration won’t be required anymore.

SOURCE: Post Today

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

The Thaiger

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

369 new Covid-19 cases were reported today during the daily briefing. Most cases were detected in Samut Sakhon in a mass testing campaign. Thailand currently has 3,147 active Covid-19 cases under treatment and investigation.

12,423 infections have now been detected since the start of 2020 – 8,186 of them reported since December 20 last year… just a month back.

12 of today’s newly announced cases were detected in quarantine from people arriving from overseas.

Police say they will issue arrest warrants for at least 2 people in connection to Saturday’s bomb attack near the Chamchuri Shopping Centre and Sam Yan MRT, just a few hundred metres from Lumphini park.

The people are suspected of throwing a ping pong bomb into a group of police officers, njuring 3 policemen and 1 reporter. Metropolitan police say the perpetrators threw the bomb from a vehicle as they were travelling over the flyover. Police found nails, wire and black electrical tape at the scene of the modest explosion.

The attack occurred at 6pm on Saturday, during a pro-democracy rally over the government’s enforcement of the lesé majeste law, which has seen over 43 people arrested, including students, since last November. Just last week, a Thammasat University student was arrested in his dorm room over lese majeste charges.

It might be a while until tourists can visit Australia, or Australians travel overseas. The Australian government has announced that borders might not reopen until at least 2022. Australia is rolling out its local immunisation program next month, but even if most of the population is vaccinated against Covid-19, the Australian government says it will probably wait to make sure the vaccine prevents the transmission of the virus before fully reopening borders.

Australia’s borders are only open for citizens, residents, those with family in Australia and travellers who have been in New Zealand for the previous 14 days. All incoming travellers must quarantine for 14 days unless they come from an area classified as a “green safe travel zone.”

The government announced today…. Already airlines have indicated that if you’re not vaccinated you can’t travel overseas and I think that’ll be an incentive to a lot of people. Looks like I’ll be chatting to family over Zoom for another year.

Thailand is on fire. The burning off of harvested crop plantations is lighting up the agricultural areas. The truth is starkly revealed in this live NASA satellite feed which tracks the fires around the world.

The website Firms.Modaps, shows the concentrations of the current fires around Central Thailand, north of Bangkok, parts of Isaan, north east of Bangkok, and around Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand.

Notably the concentration of fires in northern Cambodia and across the north-western border in Myanmar, is also causing plenty of problems as the foreign smoke drifts across the borders. No matter what Thai officials do to enforce the rice, sugar and corn plantation burn-offs, there is little they can do about the haze drifting across the borders.

Bangkok, so close to clusters of fires, is in for bad air pollution this week, or anytime the light winds of the start of the year blow from the north or the east. The lack of rain adds to the problem, the annual problem, that engulfs Thailand’s capital during days between December and April, with the worst month, statistically, being March.

Chiang Mai also has a local geographic problem which exacerbates the bad smoke pollution. The city is in a valley, surrounded by hills, trapping in the smoke and helping block any breezes that could otherwise blow it away.

A 44 year old Australian man is wanted by Thai police for allegedly sexually abusing children in Thailand. Mr Adam Fox financially supported some migrant children in poverty stricken areas and allegedly sexually abused them.

He is wanted for allegedly sexually assaulting or abusing at least 3 Burmese boys, all under 15 years old, at his home in Tak’s Mae Sot district near the Myanmar border.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Adam has claimed the accusations are a “set up.” The Herald notes there is an explicit video allegedly involving Mr. Fox and a boy, as well as messages that go into detail about sexual abuse.

Reports of alleged sexual abuse came in after a local school principal noticed some of the boys had been absent from class, according to human trafficking investigator Daniel Isherwood.

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Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Visitors to Phuket from “highest risk” areas must show Covid-19 test results

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Visitors to Phuket from “highest risk” areas must show Covid-19 test results | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Chiang Rai Times

People arriving Phuket from the “highest risk” areas are required to take a swab test by the staff at emergency operation centres (EOC) or show the test result document endorsed by the EOC staff made within 72 hours of their arrival. The revised order is effective from now until January 31, according to the Phuket Governor.

Those people who are on a brief business trip to Phuket need to show certificates from their employers describing the reason and necessity of their trips. If they want to leave their accommodations, they have to make a request to the EOC and clearly explain the reason as well as the time and destination. Visitors are also asked to avoid going to the community areas to avoid crowded gatherings.

It is noted that the revised order by the governor has not been officially promoted by the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department. However, all visitors are still asked to register online via the Mor Chana contact tracing application and via www.gophuget.com according to the order re-issued on Friday.

SOURCE: Phuket News

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