Connect with us

Opinion

Opinion: Beach bums blue after latest Phuket ban

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

PHUKET: Patong Mayor Chalermluck Kebsup is correct in calling for a compromising approach to the ban on beach chairs on the island (story here). An equitable and transparent solution must be worked out before this latest embarrassment causes irreparable damage to the island’s tourism industry, permanently driving away many of the island’s most loyal guests.

Images of elderly tourists being forced by police to remove beach chairs from the sand is the worst possible publicity for the island. This is especially true now, as it comes just months after images were seen around the world of the military personnel patrolling the sands with automatic assault rifles during the applauded cleanup campaign.

It is sad that our leaders so consistently fail to demonstrate sufficient foresight to prevent or mitigate impending problems.

In this space we have warned in advance about several disasters-in-waiting, including the inevitable collapse of the Patong Hill road due to downslope construction work, the SuperCheap inferno and the rapid break-up of the Coral Reef Squadron artificial reef after exposure to monsoon-season currents.
The Gazette is not blowing its horn or claiming special powers of prognostication: we are simply pointing out things that should be obvious to all. The ongoing beach chair fiasco is no different.

An editorial published at the start of this high-season read: For better or worse, Phuket evolved as a beach tourism destination with beach loungers and parasols as an integral part of the infrastructure. That corrupt local politicians used them to illegally amass personal fortunes over the years does not negate that reality.

That editorial went on to call for temporary measures to allow for sun loungers and parasols to be made available to tourists during the current high season, with a long-term, sustainable and transparent approach to be drawn up during the upcoming low season.

Instead, we have witnessed a series of highly-confusing directives and flip-flops, with enforcement of the controversial “no beach chair” rule varying greatly in different areas. In a final bid to end all the confusion, a complete ban on all beach chairs across the island was eventually imposed.

Not only is this ban harmful to the tourism industry, but it will no doubt prove to be unenforceable by police in the long term.

Looking further into the future, it is easier to imagine a scenario in which police replace local administrative bodies in reaping the profits from rented beach chairs, parasols and jet-skis than it is to imagine comprehensive enforcement of the ban.

Rather than ban beach chairs completely, a system could easily be devised in which tourists could simply “register” beach chairs into a central database and receive a sticker or some other form of certification that it is owed by them, not rented.

This of course seems like a cumbersome and overly bureaucratic approach to something as simple as enjoying a day at the beach, but for diehard beach bums it might be worth a try.

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand16 mins ago

Nakhon Si Thammarat prison sealed off as infections climb

Coronavirus (Covid-19)17 mins ago

Covid-19: Detailed info on vaccinations, hospitalisations, and provinces

Thailand53 mins ago

Lack of migrant workers forces government to appeal to Thais to fill vacant jobs

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Thailand2 hours ago

Songkhla motorcycle showroom catches on fire, no injuries reported

Phuket2 hours ago

Covid-19 prison death yesterday the second this week in Phuket

Thailand2 hours ago

Unemployed Bangkok chef arrested after allegedly trying to sell rare butterflies to undercover agents

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)3 hours ago

Phuket Covid-19: 1 Phuket Prison death, 1 Sandbox infection

Central Thailand4 hours ago

Bovine attack kills forest ranger in Khao Yai National Park

Thailand5 hours ago

Korat Police allegedly use police van for trip to beach

Thailand5 hours ago

Kalasin man allegedly robs convenience store and then a gold shop the next day before being arrested

Coronavirus (Covid-19)7 hours ago

Sunday Covid Update: 117 deaths and 13,576 new cases

Tourism22 hours ago

Local businesses say they aren’t profiting from Phuket Sandbox

Crime23 hours ago

Woman shot by stray gunfire during motorcycle shooting

Phuket1 day ago

Phuket pair arrested in possession of meth pills, homemade gun

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Prayut to propose to CCSA to reopen theatres, allow filmmaking

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14 | Thaiger
Thailand5 days ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism7 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism7 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand8 months ago

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

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending