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Tourism authority calls for expansion of domestic travel stimulus scheme

Maya Taylor

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Tourism authority calls for expansion of domestic travel stimulus scheme | The Thaiger
PHOTO: TTG Asia
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The Tourism Authority of Thailand is calling on the government to improve the existing domestic travel stimulus programme, in the hope of boosting home-grown tourism. The current scheme provides Thai tourists with a 40% subsidy on hotel rates, up to a maximum of 3,000 baht a night, for 10 nights. It also subsidises air fares to a maximum of 2,000 baht a ticket. Travellers also receive vouchers for food and tourist attraction entrance fees, worth 600 baht on Fridays to Sundays, and 900 baht on weekdays.

The TAT is proposing that the hotel subsidy be extended from 10 nights to 15. Initially, the subsidy was available for 5 nights only, before being increased to 10 in August. TAT governor, Yuthasak Supasorn, is also proposing that the 40% rebate on flight bookings be applied at the point of sale, as opposed to passengers having to apply for it after having made a booking.

It’s understood the proposals will be presented to the government’s Covid-19 task force tomorrow, with Yuthasak hopeful that if approved, the enhancements to the scheme will further boost domestic tourism. The proposal comes as the TAT expresses concern over a number of factors potentially contributing to a low uptake in domestic trips.

The We Travel Together stimulus programme was initially launched in mid-July, after the country emerged from lockdown, and was expected to end in October. However, it has been extended several times since, with the latest extension being until the end of January. Meanwhile, some officials have called for it to be extended right through until the end of 2021.

SOURCE: Coconuts

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. Avatar

    EdwardV

    November 17, 2020 at 12:12 pm

    Thailand is the new definition of insanity. How about instead of expanding the number of days (which has already failed twice) again. Take the money set aside for this new set of additional days and expand the credit instead. Better yet roll it back to 5 days and take all that extra money and increase the credit. At least that way it might actually work.

  2. Avatar

    Issan John

    November 17, 2020 at 12:36 pm

    Like the UK’s “Eat Out To Help Out” scheme, these schemes may be well intentioned but they simply don’t work – it’s putting a band-aid on a sucking chest wound and throwing the money away.

    • Avatar

      Jan Schauseil

      November 17, 2020 at 1:02 pm

      Charging foreigners 1000% more to enter national parks may not be conducive to encourage them to travel domestically.

  3. Avatar

    kim

    November 17, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    I think the scheme may persuade some people to do more domestic travel. My wife for one, has found some attractive offers for a weekend stay at Phi Phi, unfortunately, the ferry service provider based in Phuket is still overcharging none thais. While my wife did accept the xenophobic rip off, I personally find it disgusting and hope some day that this will be reciprocal to all thais when they travel overseas.

    • Avatar

      Khun plastic

      November 17, 2020 at 7:13 pm

      Not heard about that one before. What is the percentage mark up for this boat ride over thai nationals?

  4. Avatar

    jesus monroe

    November 17, 2020 at 5:02 pm

    great ideas……and so many Thai have so much cash to burn lately. IQ test anyone?

  5. Avatar

    Johnny Dee

    November 18, 2020 at 6:42 am

    Common sense please that’s all it takes…the people of Thailand desperately need tourism without all the BS and utter nonsense of all of this. Take a step back and draw a plan of getting tourists back without all the barbwire tactics quite simple then all let’s get back to some kind of normality

  6. Avatar

    Paul C

    November 19, 2020 at 9:55 am

    You would probably have more expats travelling within Thailand if there was no extra charges for national parks or hotels, we all live in the same country so we should all be charged the same.
    Having lived and worked in Indonesia they supplied a Indonesian I.d card which you produced if visiting any attractions or parks and you paid local rates, there was NO visa run or immigration renew every 3 months, you simply renewed your visa every year.
    Thailand should be looking to adopt new procedures

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Thailand

Thai netizens say pro-government royalists carried out Wednesday’s protest shootings

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Thai netizens say pro-government royalists carried out Wednesday’s protest shootings | The Thaiger
Thailand’s netizens are refuting police’s claims that pro-democracy protesters carried out Wednesday’s rally shootings. The shootings occurred at the rally site near Bangkok’s Siam Commerical Bank head office, where the rally site was originally planned but was then moved after protesters tried to avoid a clash with pro-government royalists. However, shots were fired, with police arresting a suspect on charges of attempted murder, shooting in public without reason, and carrying a firearm in public.

The netizens found footage of the scene, in which they say they identified the faces of the offenders. The revelation came after Deputy Metropolitan Police Bureau commissioner Piya Tawichai blamed Ratsadon guards for the shootings and injuries.

Meanwhile, the pro-democracy leaders have been called into questionby donors to the movement, as they have criticised how the leaders have used the donations, when a guard was shot and injured. Netizens took to social media to ask what “fairy godmother” Inthira “Sine” Charoenpura and Pakorn “Hia Bung” Pornchewangkurn were buying with the donation money with some online comments mentioning the display of yellow ducks and props as a poor use of donation funds. Some criticisers pointed towards using the donations to buy protective gear for protesters after the shootings occurred, prompting the 2 leaders to issue a statement that they would now use such funds for the injured guards.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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Thailand

Thai protests to continue in full force into December in line with symbolic calendar events

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Thai protests to continue in full force into December in line with symbolic calendar events | The Thaiger

The pro-democracy protests are set to continue well into December, according to Thai security officials. Officials have been preparing to cope with a rise in anti-government activities as symbolic calendar events are coming up. Today the United Front of Thammasat and Demonstration group says a protest will take place outside the 1st Infantry Battalion on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road in Phaya Thai District, giving credit to the predictions that there will no end in sight to the protests.

Thanakorn Wangboonkongchana, a secretary to PM’s Office Minister Anucha Nakasai, made the announcement yesterday in light of the Constitutional Court being set to pass a ruling this Wednesday on whether PM Prayut is guilty of occupying a house that is meant for military officials.

Prayut is accused by the opposition of engaging in the conflict of interest by occupying the army residence. Such a move should have ended with his army chief tenure in 2014, according to critics.

Following the upcoming ruling on Wednesday, the symbolic calendar event of Constitution Day falls on December 10, a day which will ignite more protests as one of the main demands of pro-democracy demonstrators is to have a new Thai charter, along with the resignation of Prayut and reform of the Thai monarchy.

But despite the anticipated rise in rallies, security officials have ruled out the possibility of a military coup. Critics remain sceptical as many demonstrators claim the government has put police on the front lines of the protests, dressed in yellow shirts, in an attempt to spark a clash to pave the way for a coup. The current PM, when he was the head of the Thai Army in 2014, also said there would be “no coup” against the elected Yingluck Shinawatra government. A month later the NCPO led a bloodless coup and installed Prayut Chan-o-cha as the interim prime minister.

Piya Tawichai, the deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, says protesters yesterday gathered near the Imperial World Samrong shopping mall in Samut Prakan before marching to the Bang Na intersection to rally, partially blocking the road. According to Kissana Phathanacharoen, the deputy spokesman for the national police, the protesters did not obtain permission for staging the rally.

Some protesters also reportedly spray-painted traffic police kiosks with messages that criticised the police for “ditching the people,” and smashed kiosk windows. Panusaya “Rung” Sithijirawattanakul, a protest leader, posted on Facebook yesterday that she has been summoned for violating Section 112 of the Criminal Code, which bans anyone from criticising the King which states:

“Whoever defames, insults or threatens the King, the Queen, the Heir-apparent or the Regent, shall be punished with imprisonment of three to fifteen years.”

Rung says she believes the summons is linked to the September 10 anti-government rally.

SOURCE:The Phuket News

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Chiang Rai

Ron Howard to direct cave rescue feature film ‘Thirteen Lives’ in Australia

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Ron Howard to direct cave rescue feature film ‘Thirteen Lives’ in Australia | The Thaiger
PHOTO: The entrance to the real Tham Luang cave near the Myanmar border in far north Thailand

The Australian Government is putting up A$13 million to Imagine Entertainment and film giant MGM to shoot a live-action feature film called Thirteen Lives, based on the Chiang Rai Tham Luang cave rescue story. The film will be shot in Queensland, Australia in the hinterland areas behind the Gold Coast.

The film will be directed by Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, The Da Vince Code, Cocoon, Solo: A Star Wars Story, Splash, Frost/Nixon), and start filming in March 2021. The state’s Gold Coast hinterland will double for Thailand with a similar hot, humid climate.

The Australian Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, Paul Fletcher MP, says the production ishould inject more than A$96 million into the Australian economy, “directly creating around 435 jobs for cast and crew”.

Thirteen Lives will tell the remarkable story of the effort by many volunteers, including Australians, to undertake an incredibly complex rescue. And I am proud to say that this story will be told here in Australia.”

“I understand this project will also undertake a significant amount of cutting-edge visual effects work here, a great opportunity for our local post, digital and visual effects companies.”

Thirteen Lives follows the true story of the 2018 Tham Laung cave rescue of the Mu Pa (Wild Boar) football team, trapped in a cave by heavy rain and flooding in Chiang Rai, far north Thailand. After the team was stuck for days with no supplies and falling oxygen levels, a group of diving and rescue experts from all over the world were called up to work together with their Thai counterparts to save the 13 young men. Among those experts were a group of divers from the United Kingdom and Australia.

The first major feature film about the rescue operation was The Cave, released in October 2019. The film was quite critical of the Thai red-tape which hampered much of the early rescue efforts.

Ron Howard has worked with plenty of Australians in the past.

“From Thirteen Lives to the animated projected I am directing with Animal Logic in Australia, I am excited about the opportunity to film and work in Australia and dramatically expand on that list of collaborators whose sensibilities and work ethic I have long admired and respected.”

Imagine Entertainment and MGM’s Thirteen Lives will be distributed by Universal Pictures International.

Watch a message from director Ron Howard HERE.

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