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Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce to propose Guangzhou-Phuket tourism route

Caitlin Ashworth

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Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce to propose Guangzhou-Phuket tourism route | The Thaiger
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A tourism route from Guangzhou, China to Phuket could help the island province recover from the recession brought on by the pandemic and lack of foreign travel, according to the Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce. The president of the organisation, Narongsak Puttapornmongkol, says they plan to submit a letter proposing the route under a travel bubble scheme to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration.

The Thai-Chinese Chamber of Commerce is proposing a travel bubble with around 20 cities in China with no recent coronavirus infections and considered to be at a low risk of spreading the virus. Travellers from Guangzhou recently entered Thailand on the new Special Tourist Visa. It was the second flight of international tourists since travel restrictions were imposed in late-March.

“We believe that the Travel Bubble and the quarantine reduction will resolve the tourism business, which is a huge economic opportunity to recover.”

Once a vaccine is widely available, Narongsak suggests that those who wish to Thailand could also present their vaccination certificate or examination reports from the place of origin. He adds that the mandatory state quarantine period is likely to be reduced.

SOURCE: Pattaya News

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25 Comments

25 Comments

  1. Avatar

    RORY N KEELAN

    Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 4:45 pm

    This implies that there will still be a quarantine even for those who have been vaccinated. Madness

    • Avatar

      Timmytime

      Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 4:57 pm

      Yes, more insane madness. But what else to expect. The government, TAT etc is today beyond desperate. Another proposal and again the chinese is in focus again. The never ending CCP butt kissing never seems to stopp.

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 6:44 pm

      Why, exactly, if the vaccine doesn’t prevent transmission and most of the population aren’t vaccinated?

      “If”.

      Just asking …..

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 7:20 pm

      … and I’d suggest that “if” particularly applies to a vaccine from China – not so much because of the question over if they can be trusted over Covid-19 (which is a pretty big ‘question’), but whether they can be trusted over ANY vaccine given their past record.

    • Avatar

      Preesy Chepuce

      Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 12:23 am

      That’s just common sense, from a procedural point of view, whether or not you believe that the vaccine is real or not. You have to quarantine people until you build up statistics about the real world efficacy of a vaccine outside of the lab. Having said that, you should make the quarantine process as cheap as possible, because the more people you can get to do the quarantine, the more data you can get, and the quicker you can verify the efficacy of the vaccine and of the procedures. It seems that one of the biggest obstacles is that the price of visiting Thailand is too high.

      • Avatar

        Patrick Kelly

        Thursday, December 3, 2020 at 1:06 am

        Travel corridors is truly a desperate action just to show that the TAT is still grasping at straws. I read these articles and wonder if they are a joke or the brain child of a government that is about to throw up their hands and plead for mercy. The actions of the populace and authorities is something far from competent. Zero Covid is a pipe dream . Learn to deal with it !

    • Avatar

      Nipral

      Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 2:17 am

      Of course ! Quarantine means money !!!

  2. Avatar

    Timmytime

    Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 4:51 pm

    Here we go again, the chinese will get the vip
    treatment while the rest has to put up with the governments incompetence and endless change of mind with new rules and regulations etc etc. This endless CCP butt kissing is going to end bad for Thailand but as always, money comes first, a bad world wide reputation last.

    • Avatar

      Preesy Chepuce

      Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 12:36 am

      Thailand is in a bit of a bind. The CCP’s diplomacy strategy is very cynical in that it will use its money to give any regime what it needs, and this buys the CCP access and influence. The West has pesky things called standards and protocols that need to be adhered to, which undermines the West’s ability to compete with China on that level. The bet by the West is that the openness and standards will always keep the West innovating and driving the world economy, but the naive optimism that economics would undermine the CCP and precipitate the CCP falling and being replaced by the GMD. The world is steadily moving towards a new cold war between China and the West, and Thailand, along with other countries, is caught in the middle of it. Obviously the sino population is a bit protectionist in many of these ASEAN states, and tries to keep out the white competetion, and cosy up to the CCP, but this is a naive strategy, because the CCP is not an engine of economic growth, it’s a big fat parasite, which feeds off the West through cheap exports, and has now so alienated the West as to sow the seeds of a change in economic strategy that will reduce the CCP’s income and influence globally, and that itself may result in the CCP lashing out with dubious projects, the most worrying of which is the risk surrounding Taiwan.

      • Avatar

        Fabian

        Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 11:36 am

        Your observation is good. But I do think you can say we are already at the beginning of a (mostly technological) cold war. Look at what happened at the border between China and India recently. Now India is teaming up with Australia, Japan and the US in the South Chinese Sea for military drills, while China is threatening Japan’s sea borders. Meanwhile Xi Jinping tells his solders to prepare for war and makes best friends with Pakistan and start military training together. Meanwhile the confrontation between Australia and China has been escalating in the past days. Its going to get worse and it’s going to happen soon.

        • Avatar

          Preesy Chepuce

          Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 9:13 pm

          what alarms me more is the CCP’s interest in AI, data, IoT, and hacking… it’s a lot cheaper to conduct a war virtually than physically, most wars are about resource attrition – that’s why the USA beat Japan. If Japan had turned its Asian empire into a factory for producing military equipment, and hit California first, rather than Pearl Harbor, the outcome could have been quite different. The way the CCP is treating it’s people using info gathering tech, which, by the way is essentially uncontroller unregulated military technology, is terrifying.

  3. Avatar

    Fabian

    Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 6:34 pm

    Thailand.. land of proposals

    (that never make it to become a concrete project)

  4. Avatar

    fizzley

    Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 8:30 pm

    No other Country is even allowing entrance, maybe we are to cut Thailand a break.

  5. Avatar

    Remo

    Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 11:04 pm

    China is absolutely not transparent, so the world does not have a clue what is the real situation there.

    One thing is sure: not zero as they claim.

    It is more than stupid to base any decision on fake data that comes from the Chinese government.

    • Avatar

      Bobby m

      Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 6:42 am

      Agree Remo

      Just seen on tonight’s news that leaked documents showing how just Un-transparent they have been with declared numbers being completely different to those actually recorded. There are gaps as wide as two thousand in one day. They also show that one day in February there were 93 deaths. However, there were 196 actually recorded. The report goes on to add that the wet market remains sealed and guarded and nearly a year since the outbreak. WHO and other independent investigators are still being denied access.

      A quote from the article says.

      “ It is now true to say that many countries, including the UK, have figures that don’t tell the whole story of their national pandemic situation. The difference is that in China there will be no post-pandemic inquiry allowed, no investigation into their data”.

      Says it all really.

      What does it say to the rest of the world, when Thailand wants to treat those, that one way or another, gave us this virus and certainly appears to have manipulated their figures as “VIP’ guests”

  6. Avatar

    EdwardV

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 12:37 am

    The fact people from Guangzhou recently traveled to Thailand under the STV is completely meaningless. It’s already known Chinese tourists won’t quarantine and since their average stay in Thailand is 5-7 days even a small quarantine is out of the question. We are not even talking about the fact they would be forced to quarantine upon returning home. The entire idea is a non-starter. Still you can’t blame the officials of Phuket to be grasping at straws, desperation at this stage of the shut down is to be expected.

  7. Avatar

    Robert Elliot

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 12:41 am

    Who Cares. Thailand seems to think everybody is desperate to go there and therefore makes all these crazy rules for getting in. In my opinion Thailand needs tourists way more than tourists need Thailand.

  8. Avatar

    Mike Frenchie

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 12:49 am

    If you are vaccinated and you should still quarantine, close the country for good and send 10 million people back to agriculture at 3000 THB/month salary right now.

    No tourist will come with a quarantine… I like to remember that “solitary confinement” is a PUNISHMENT in prison!
    For anyone talking about it, go through a quarantine first and come back to discuss later… (the Facebook Thailand ASQ group is amazing… some anecdotes are brilliant).

    • Avatar

      Issan John

      Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 4:44 pm

      “send 10 million people back to agriculture” ?

      “10 million” ?

      That’s over a quarter of Thailand’s working population!

      Are you saying that over a quarter of the working population are working in the foreign tourism industry?

      … and how about allowing for the foreign immigrants who are working in the bottom end of the industry? There are 60,000 of them just in Phuket!

      • Avatar

        Preesy Chepuce

        Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 9:17 pm

        As I recall, there are secondary industries that benefit indirectly from tourism – much like the proliferation of convenience stores, they are beneficiaries of tourism, although they are not strictly tourist businesses; you could say the same for the car parts and finance sectors, all of them get something indirect out of tourism. Thailand has specialized its economy around tourism, and that’s why its feeling the pain. The only answer is diversification away from tourism and that requires education, openness to farang countries.

  9. Avatar

    Ben

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 6:08 am

    Another idea proposed by a business lobby that won’t go anywhere. The big boys in Bangkok have already stated there will be no general tourism without a vaccine which is estimated to be implemented by the 2nd quarter of 2021 in the US at the earliest. Guess the lobby has to show they’re trying.

    Some have brought up the point those vaccinated may still spread the virus. The US CDC will be looking for that and will know by 2nd quarter next year if that’s true or not. If true Thailand will not open to general tourism until 60% of its population has been vaccinated which would delay opening the country by a few months at most so not a long-term issue.

    The country should be open to general tourism by mid-2021. Plan accordingly.

  10. Avatar

    hydraides

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 6:58 am

    No other Country is even allowing entrance, maybe we are to cut Thailand a break.

    Erm What? last time I checked Mexico was, Chile was, Brazil was Nearly all of EU if you are an EU citizen, USA might even be opening soon

  11. Avatar

    Robert222

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 7:31 am

    Please no!!! We do not want pollution generating chinese buses all over the island!

  12. Avatar

    Keith

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 10:16 am

    I agree it is a proposal to kiss CCP a**e, but is still more that the dictators and his cronies have done after their boondoggle here last month, I wonder is it called a Cabinet because it sits there and does nothing?

  13. Avatar

    Jack Sombra

    Wednesday, December 2, 2020 at 4:28 pm

    You would think that the ‘Thai-Chinese’ Chamber of Commerce would know that Chinese government are not going to pull quarantine and let their people travel out of country on mass, they made that clear directly to TAT governor yet again only about 10 days ago. China is in no hurry to open, their domestic tourist industry is having a great period with all those people not able to travel abroad, which means their money stays in country.

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Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phuket. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Caitlin Ashworth is a writer from the United States who has lived in Thailand since 2018. She graduated from the University of South Florida St. Petersburg with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2016. She was a reporter for the Daily Hampshire Gazette In Massachusetts. She also interned at the Richmond Times-Dispatch in Virginia and Sarasota Herald-Tribune in Florida.

Thailand

UPDATE: Confusion over Covid-19 tests for visa extensions

Caitlin Ashworth

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UPDATE: Confusion over Covid-19 tests for visa extensions | The Thaiger

UPDATE: Khaosod English removed a story on Covid-19 tests for those seeking visa extensions and replaced it with the article “Immigration backtracks on plan to require Covid-19 test for visa extensions.” They say the previous report sparked uproar among expats and immigration police spokesperson has since apologised for the misunderstanding.

Original article…

Confusion reigns today over whether Covid-19 tests will be required for visa extensions. While The Phuket News spoke with an immigration official who said “no… you don’t need a Covid-19 test to extend your visa or apply for a work permit”, Khaosod English wrote an article headlined “Covid-19 test will be mandatory for all visa extension”.

The Thaiger also contacted a respected visa agent who said Covid-19 tests are, indeed, now required for applying for both visa extensions and work permits, even renewals.

The Thai Immigration Bureau has not made any official announcement regarding Covid-19 tests. Talk about Covid-19 tests for foreigners was brought up after a rule was published in the Royal Gazette last month, officially adding Covid-19 to a list of dangerous diseases, prohibiting those infected with any of the listed illnesses from entering the country.

Immigration Police Bureau spokesperson Archayon Kraithong told Khaosod English that proof of a negative Covid-19 test will be required for visa extensions, regardless of how long a foreigner has stayed in Thailand. On the other hand, Phuket immigration deputy chief Nareuwat Putthawiro told The Phuket News that Covid-19 tests will not be required for visa extensions or work permit applications.

“We do not require any medical documents for an application to renew a visa, because there are few foreigners’ movements outside Phuket. Most of them live and work in Phuket, and have done so before the new wave of Covid-19… So they do not have to worry about it. Everything is still the same.”

Medical exams are currently already required for most work permit applicants (including tests for Syphilis and Elephantiasis). A visa agent told The Thaiger that Covid-19 tests have been added to the medical examination requirements for work permit applicants. But, on the other hand, Phuket immigration says they DO NOT require Covid-19 tests for work permit applicants.

“We have not received any notices about Covid-19 requirements for processing applications to renew visas. If we do receive any such orders, we will let the public know.”

It isn’t the first time there has been conflicting statements coming out of different officials, in different immigration offices on different days.

SOURCES: Phuket News| Khaosod English

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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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Tourism

The road less travelled – trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint

The Thaiger

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The road less travelled – trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | The Thaiger

There are two well known ways to get from Kathu to Kalim or Kamala – one is across the Patong Hill, and the other is much longer, through Srisoonthorn and along the coastal road from Surin the Kamala (very scenic too).

But there’s also another way. Also very scenic but will take you about 2 hours through dense forest although there is a well-worn walking track. The track will take you from Kathu up to the Kalim Viewpoint. From here you can head back to Kathu along a different path, or down into Kalim, near Patong.

Starting about halfway down Soi Namtok in Kathu, you head up a nondescript road past the Flying Hanuman zipline attraction, although there’s no sign at the entrance to the soi (below). About the first kilometre is paved but then becomes increasingly ‘agricultural’ as you get higher into the hills, heading towards the Kalim Viewpoint. There’s also a small temple on the way up.

The road less travelled - trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | News by The Thaiger

PHOTO: The start of the trek, a small soi off Soi Namtok – Google Maps

It will take around 2 hours to trek up to the Kalim Viewpoint. The walking is quite strenuous and you’ll need to be wearing the right shoes and take plenty of water – there’s no 7/11s on the way! As you get nearer the top, to the viewpoint, the track becomes less drivable although the track is still quite open and easy to follow. If you’re feeling a bit lazy you can take a motorbike about halfway up the road until you’ll need to proceed on foot from there.

From the Kalim Viewpoint you can see across Kalim to Patong Bay and the land that stretches along the bay south of Patong Beach. From the top you can either make your way down to Kalim or another exit along the Kalim-Kamala Road, just near the Iguana Beach Club.

You can also head back another way to Kathu, a longer return track that skirts around the top of the Kathu Waterfall. A lot of that track gets very narrow and parts of it are up and down the hills, some of it very steep.

The views are amazing and you get to see a vast swathe of Phuket, still very close to popular locations like Patong, Kamala and Kathu, but untouched by any civilisation.

You’ll need to be in reasonable health to take on the trip but, just to go up to the Kalim Viewpoint and back, or down into Kalim, should take around 5 hours in total. On a scale of 1 – 5 for difficulty, we’d rate it a 3. An easy trek for experienced people but will need a bit of planning if you’re not an experienced trekker.

Even on a hazy day, as it was today, the views were amazing. But best to start off early morning when the weather is cooler. Well worth the time for the views and the opportunity to see more of Phuket, away from the bars and beaches.

Thanks to BT for the pics and information.

The road less travelled - trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | News by The Thaiger

The road less travelled - trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | News by The ThaigerThe road less travelled - trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | News by The Thaiger

The road less travelled - trekking to the Kalim Viewpoint | News by The Thaiger

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