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Thai Airways to launch one-off flight over sacred Buddhist sites

Maya Taylor

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Thai Airways to launch one-off flight over sacred Buddhist sites | The Thaiger
PHOTO: www.thaitravelblogs.com
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Thai Airways has announced a special flight on November 30 that will give passengers the opportunity to chant Buddhist mantras while flying over 99 sacred sites in the Kingdom. Wiwat Piyawiroj, executive vice-president at the struggling national carrier, says passengers will fly over Bangkok and 31 provinces, taking in 99 holy sites, over which they will be able to chant Buddhist mantras.

The flight will take off from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport at 1.30pm on November 30, landing back at the airport at 4.30pm. Bookings can be made up until November 25. An economy seat is expected to cost around 6,000 baht. However, if you fancy doing your chanting in more plush surroundings, a business class seat will set you back around 10,000 baht.

According to a Bangkok Post report, the flight is part of the airline’s “Magical Flying Experience” campaign. Wiwat says its aim is to give the tourism sector a boost, in accordance with the government’s policy. It’s not clear how this works however, as passengers will remain in the sky for the duration of the flight.

“There will be no landing during the flight and passengers will receive positive energy from chanting while onboard.”

Meanwhile, the secretary-general of the Association for the Protection of the Thai Constitution, Srisuwan Janya, says union members at Thai Airways will today file an official complaint at Government House over the airline’s rehabilitation plan, which they say contains irregularities.

The plan was approved by the Central Bankruptcy Court in September. As part of the plan, nearly 5,000 employees have applied for voluntary resignation. The airline currently employs around 20,000 staff and is fighting for survival, crippled by debts of over 330 billion baht, after years of mismanagement and a culture of corruption. There’s going to be a lot of positive energy required to come back from that.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Johnny Rambo

    November 3, 2020 at 12:35 pm

    You can pray to your mighty Buddha as much as you want to, but you wont save your hopelessly atrophied economy with all those extraordinarily dumb ideas.

  2. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    November 3, 2020 at 3:26 pm

    I what a pity. I will miss that, and I do like a good long chant.

  3. Avatar

    Khun plastic

    November 3, 2020 at 4:17 pm

    Surprised they are allowed to keep operating seeing as the Thai website has a link for creditors to register claims against the company?
    I was not aware that Thailand had a bankruptcy protection type of set up like in the USA.
    I hope things improve for the remaining aircrews and groundstaff at Thai but not the senior management.

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Pattaya

Pandemic has washed away Pattaya’s “soapy” massage parlours

The Thaiger

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Pandemic has washed away Pattaya’s “soapy” massage parlours | The Thaiger

While the Covid pandemic has hit Thailand’s businesses hard, it has also washed away its not-so-legal soapy massage parlours after tourism has dried up its clientele. Such places, known as glorified brothels, have left many masseuses out of work as boards have barricaded the once booming establishments.

Soapy Massage (àap-òp-nûat, อาบอบนวด, literally bath, steam, massage)…
These are the bigger massage parlours where girls are presented in the fishbowl and you get the full program (including sex) for a fixed price, depending on the girl starting from 1,500 and up to 5,000 Baht.

Only a few of the soapy services have survived the pandemic in Pattaya, with Honey Massage Parlour being one of them, according to The Pattaya Mail. After adjusting to the new requirements for social distancing, the business has re-opened on November 19. However, its largest shop has closed, once known as Honey 1 on Soi Honey, or Soi 11, the windows are dark and barricaded. Honey Inn is also up for sale.

25 year old masseuse Maywadee, says she used to work in such parlours where she would get a cut of the 1,500 to 2,500 baht fee. She says she used to see up to 7 clients a day, but now that number has been cut in half as Chinese and Japanese tourists, who were her largest group of customers have dwindled. Now, she is thinking about heading back to her home city of Chiang Mai, to sell handicrafts, as her Pattaya income has dried up.

Such parlours feature masseuses that are usually not native to the area, as many come from lower socio-economic areas such as Thailands northeastern provinces, otherwise known as Isaan. Many make the trip to tourist-driven cities like Pattaya, Koh Samui, Bangkok and others, in an attempt to make a higher salary than they would if they were back in Isaan.

SOURCE: The Pattaya Mail

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Business

Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht’s strength

The Thaiger

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Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht’s strength | The Thaiger

The Bank of Thailand has moved forward measures, originally meant to begin early 2021, but most of which will now take effect from end of this month. The end result is that the new rules will make it easier for Thais to shuffle money overseas and invest in foreign assets. It will also make is easier for Thai citizens to hold foreign currency in local banks. The new rules will also require the registration of local and overseas bond investors.

“Following the U.S. elections and positive news on Covid-19 vaccine development, investors have turned toward investing in emerging markets, including Thailand. The situation has resulted in strengthening the baht quickly and can impact economic recovery.”

“The registration of bond investors will allow close monitoring of investor’s behaviours and thereby enable the implementation of targeted measures in a timely manner.”

Last week the Bank of Thailand assessed that the Thai baht’s recent rapid gains could affect the country’s “fragile” economic recovery. The Thai government has called on the central bank to do its best to use what tools it has at its disposal to restrain the baht to protect exports.

Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at ANZ Banking Group, says that he central bank also will continue to resort to direct intervention in foreign-exchange markets.

“The issue here is that local investors have a very strong home bias. Making it easier to invest overseas may not actually encourage them to do so.”

The Thai baht has been the 2nd best performer in Asia this month after foreign investors turned net buyers of almost $2.4 billion of bonds and stocks as appetite returns for riskier emerging-market assets amid a weak dollar, according to Bloomberg.

The Thai baht had recently rallied 8.8% from this year’s low in April, hitting a 10 month high last week.

SOURCE: Bloomberg

This morning, Thai time…

Bank of Thailand takes action to curb Thai baht's strength | News by The Thaiger

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Technology

Hotel investment group launches world’s first “green” hotel fund

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Hotel investment group launches world’s first “green” hotel fund | The Thaiger

Destination Capital, a hotel investment group in Bangkok, has announced that it will launch the world’s first ever “green” hotel fund. The fund will acquire hotels and implement sustainability systems and procedures to promote long term environmental and financial sustainability in investments using the EDGE certification programme. EDGE, an online platform, is an innovation of the International Finance Corporation, which helps property developers to build and brand “green” establishments in a fast and affordable way. EDGE is used by more than 170 countries and reportedly has kept almost 230,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually from entering the atmosphere.

DC’s fund, titled Descap I, is part of its efforts to acquire freehold, 4 star hotels in prime destinations all over Thailand. James Kaplan, the CEO of DC, says he sees opportunities to renovate hotels to accommodate “green” technology and systems due to the current Covid pandemic that has ravaged the tourism sector in the kingdom.

“Destination Capital’s adoption of the EDGE certification program will provide the Descap I with the opportunity to gain a competitive advantage by differentiating our products and improving carbon emissions of the hotels.”

“If there is one thing we have learned during Covid-19 it is that the environment and nature recover quickly from poor resource management practices. Our participation in EDGE will serve to encourage the hospitality industry to adopt best practices with respect to better managing our scarce resources, raise broader consciousness about global warming and stem the tide of environmental degradation. We will implement operational elements to reduce water consumption, reduce waste emissions, reduce electricity use, and to the best of our ability eliminate plastic usage.”

Descap I, is a Thai Private Equity Trust. The company partners with Private Equity and Institutional Funds to source hotel acquisition opportunities and manage assets in the Asia Pacific region, turning its main focus to Thailand.

SOURCE: Pattaya Mail

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