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BMA allows alcohol in restaurants in Bangkok with some rules

Neill Fronde



PHOTO: Alcohol will be allowed at restaurants in Bangkok. (via Pixabay)

The Bangkok Metropolitan Administration has finally agreed to let the plan to lift the alcohol ban in restaurants for Blue Zone tourist areas proceed in Bangkok with some caveats. The CCSA created a new addition to their Covid-19 colour-coded zones for the 4 key tourist areas of Bangkok, Phuket, Krabi, and Phang Nga, based on tourism need more than Covid-19 data, that eases many health and safety restrictions including the beginning of allowing booze back in the provinces, starting with restaurants.

The BMA has decided that alcohol will be allowed to be served and consumed in restaurants in Bangkok, but only until 9 pm. They will also limit which restaurants can serve alcohol, only allowing those who have received SHA certification. This may mean that drinks can mostly be had in chains and upscale restaurants, as The Thaiger previously reported that many local small business operators complain that they can’t get assistance to get approved for SHA and therefore can’t benefit from reopenings.

The CCSA announced Friday that the 4 provinces would be allowed to serve alcohol in restaurants to make the destination more attractive to foreign tourists who can more easily enter Thailand from tomorrow, but the BMA responded the next day with hesitancy, hinting they might not allow alcohol in their province.

Today they relented, with the insistence that strict Covid-19 prevention and safety protocols be enacted in any restaurant serving alcohol to limit the spread of infections. Bangkok may be more sensitive to this as it was the indulgent clubs of Thong Lor where the wealthy elite drank and partied freely without concern of Covid-19 that led to the massive spread of the third wave of the pandemic in Thailand that was exponentially more deadly than the first 2 waves.

The BMA conceded the alcohol in restaurants rule, saying it is provisional until the end of November. But entertainment venues like bars, clubs, pubs, and karaoke will remain closed for the time being.

Bangkok will ease restrictions on other businesses like tattoo shops, spas, massage, beauty salons, nail salons and beauty clinics, but most are allowed to serve only customers that are fully vaccinated or tested within 72 hours, and operate by appointment only.


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Neill is a journalist from the United States with 10 years broadcasting experience and national news and magazine publications. He graduated with a degree in journalism and communications from the University of California and has been living in Thailand since 2014.

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