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  • Thai Nightlife Business Hours | 2:00 am Closing

    Bars reopening in Thailand’s “Green” and “Blue” Zones, changes to Thailand Pass


    Today, Thailand’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration – or CCSA – announced the official reopening of nightlife venues in both “green” and “blue” zones across the kingdom. Pubs, bars, nightclubs, massage parlours and karaoke bars are permitted to serve alcohol and open until midnight, beginning June 1. Nightlife venues in “yellow” zones are not permitted to reopen.
    • Green Zones (14 Provinces): Chai Nat, Trat, Nakhom Phanom, Nan, Buriram, Pichit, Ang Thong, Mahasakam, Yasathon, Lampang, Surat Thani, Surin, Udon Thani and Amnat Charoen. Blue zones (17 provinces): Krabi, Bangkok, Kanchanaburi, Chon Buri, Chanthaburi, Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nonthaburi, Narathiwat, Pathum Thani, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phang Nga, Phetchaburi, Phuket, Rayong, Songkhla.
    • Yellow Zones (46 Provinces): Kalasin, Kamphaeng Phet, Khon Kaen, Chaiyaphum, Chumphon, Trang, Tak, Nakhon Nayok, Nakhon Pathom, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Nakhon Sawan, Bueng Kan, Prachin Buri, Pattani, Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, Phayao, Phatthalung, Phitsanulok, Phetchabun, Phrae, Mukdahan, Mae Hong Son, Yala, Roi Et, Ranong, Ratchaburi, Lopburi, Leoi, Lamphun, Sri Saket, Sakon Nakhon, Satun, Samut Prakan, Samut Songkhram, Samut Sakhon, Sa Kaeo, Saraburi, Sing Buri, Sukhothai, Suphan Buri, Nong Khai, Nong Bua Lamphu, Uttaradit, Uthai Thani and Ubon Ratchathani.

    The CCSA has cancelled Thailand Pass for Thai nationals, who may freely enter Thailand with just their passports from June 1.2022 Foreigners are still required to download Thailand Pass prior to entering Thailand, but the CCSA announced today that they have “streamlined” the Thailand Pass for foreigners, with the changes commencing on June 1.
    Thailand Pass requirements (vaccinated travellers)
    • Vaccine certificate
    • Covid-19 Insurance covering at least 10,000 USD
    • Passport
    Thailand Pass requirements (unvaccinated travellers)
    • Negative PCR or Pro-ATK test result taken 72 hours prior to entering Thailand
    • Covid-19 Insurance covering at least 10,000 USD
    • Passport
    Nothing will change for vaccinated travellers entering Thailand from June 1. Unvaccinated travellers may, but will no longer be required to provide a negative PCR test result prior to entering the kingdom. Instead, they may now simply upload evidence of a negative Pro-ATK test to Thailand Pass within 72 hours prior to arrival.

    In the Thai language CCSA meeting today, the CCSA said that unvaccinated travellers may enter Thailand without any pre-arrival testing at all from June 1, if they take an ATK test upon arrival. However, an English language flowchart provided by the CCSA says that uploading a negative Pro-ATK OR PCR test is a Thailand Pass requirement for unvaccinated travellers. The possibility that unvaccinated travellers can enter Thailand without any pre-arrival testing at all is to be confirmed.

    The CCSA announced the emergency decree will also be extended by 2 months until the end of July.
    This breaking report is a translation from the CCSA meeting that continues at this time.


  • #2
    As Thailand’s bars plan to reopen in some areas, vendors call to relax curfew

    After Thailand’s CCSA announced yesterday that nightlife venues in both “green” and “blue” zones will reopen on June 1, nightlife operators are calling to move the current midnight curfew to 2-4am. The 31 provinces defined as green and blue zones include busy tourist hubs such as Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, and Chon Buri.

    Thailand’s alcohol curfew has particularly impacted nightlife hotspots such as Pattaya. The president of the Thai Hotels Association’s eastern chapter, Phisut Sae-Khu, said the Thai government must take more risks with the curfew if it wants to compete with other countries.

    “The remaining barriers have to be dropped as soon as possible to make tourists feel truly welcome.”
    The executive adviser at the Thai Alcohol Beverage Business Association, Thanakorn Kuptajit, said that pushing the curfew only 1 hour later, from 11pm to midnight, is “unlikely to be enough to bring nightlife business back to normal”. He said Thailand should also revise its law prohibiting alcohol sales between 2pm and 5pm, since it impacts hotel and retail operators.

    To know where bars, pubs, nightclubs, massage parlours and karaoke bars will be able to reopen on June 1, see the provinces designated as blue and green zones below.
    • Green Zones (14 Provinces):
      Chai Nat, Trat, Nakhom Phanom, Nan, Buriram, Pichit, Ang Thong, Mahasakam, Yasathon, Lampang, Surat Thani, Surin, Udon Thani and Amnat Charoen.
    • Blue zones (17 Provinces):
      Krabi, Bangkok, Kanchanaburi, Chon Buri, Chanthaburi, Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Nakhon Ratchasima, Nonthaburi, Narathiwat, Pathum Thani, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phang Nga, Phetchaburi, Phuket, Rayong, Songkhla.


    • #3
      Bangkok nightlife venues frustrated with June 1 re-opening rules

      The owners of bars, clubs, and other nightlife venues in Bangkok have expressed frustration with conditions governing the June 1 re-opening. From Wednesday, such businesses can re-open, provided they are located in the 31 blue or green zones, adhere to disease prevention measures, and close by midnight.

      It’s the midnight closure that most are finding frustrating, with several business owners describing the re-opening as pointless as long as this stipulation is in force. According to a Bangkok Post report, Thanupong Paensodsaicharoenkij, from one nightlife venue on Khao San Road, says while he’s glad he can re-open for business, the latest easing of restrictions is only a half-measure. He points out that the government’s rigid clinging to Covid restrictions, including requiring overseas arrivals to take out expensive insurance coverage, is driving foreign tourists to neighbouring countries.

      “It has been more than 2 years since the outbreak and we here in Khao San are up to our ears in debt. Yet when the outbreak is easing the government gets nervous.”
      The president of the Khao San Road Business Association agrees, saying Wednesday’s re-opening will make little difference to nightlife venues in the capital. Sanga Ruangwattanakul says that in order to give businesses a chance to recover, opening hours need to be extended past midnight. He points out that if venues can remain open until 2:00 am from September, this would generate an extra 300 – 400 Billion THB for the economy.

      “Currently we are already open and serve alcohol until midnight, so the latest measure doesn’t help much. Why don’t the government go beyond that? The ban on alcohol sales from 2pm to 5pm isn’t helpful either.”
      Sanga is also calling for the emergency decree to be revoked and for the government to get rid of the communicable disease control law, both of which he says are proving a deterrent to foreign tourists.

      “The outbreak is easing and most people are fully vaccinated. Japan has already relaxed outdoor face-mask rules. But the government is afraid of this and that. We will be left behind.”


      • #4
        Chiang Mai bars, clubs prepare to re-open for business tomorrow

        Chiang Mai’s bars and clubs have been waiting a long time, but finally, from tomorrow, they can once again welcome back customers. As the Covid-19 situation in Thailand continues to improve, the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration has given nightlife venues in the green and blue provinces the go-ahead to re-open for business. Those that have survived, that is.

        According to a Nation Thailand report, Chiang Mai’s governor, Prajon Pratsakul, has confirmed that bars, clubs, and other nightlife in the northern province can re-open in line with CCSA guidelines. He warns that such venues will come in for close scrutiny to ensure they’re adhering to the required disease prevention measures.

        One massage parlour owner is relieved he can finally re-open for business. Somsak Chaiket from the Sayuri Complex massage parlour says his staff are happy to return to work and earn an income again. He says he’s already received enquiries from customers who wanted to know if he would be re-opening and expects business to be brisk on the first day back.

        Somsak says 50 of his employees have confirmed their return. His business previously employed over 100 people prior to the pandemic. He adds that ventilation in the premises has been improved to make it safer and the business now meets all Thai Stop Covid requirements. Customers will be required to show evidence of a negative antigen test and proof of being fully vaccinated before they will be admitted. Meanwhile, all workers will have to take an antigen test every 3 days.

        Chaweewan Chaimanee, who works as a cook at the facility, says she’s happy to get back to work as she’s spent the last year without a regular income, having to rely on odd jobs just to survive.


        • #5
          CCSA to give thumbs up to 4am licensing in Thailand next week

          The Tourism and Sports Minister yesterday revealed the department needs Centre of Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) approval before it can extend licensing hours from 2:00 am to 4:00 am.

          Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn acknowledged that many people don’t want opening hours extended across the country but the minister insists it is necessary for the greater economic good of Thailand. The extended entertainment hours apply to specific touristy areas in particular like Khao San Road, Bangla Street, Patong Beach, Phuket, Pattaya Walking Street, Ao Nang in Krabi, Khao Lak in Phan Nga, Hua Hin, Samui, and Chaing Mai. Phiphat made it known that the measures are needed because they fit in with the lifestyle of those foreigners who visit the kingdom.

          “People from Europe and the Middle East start their dinner at 10pm and started drinking at about midnight. They just start enjoying the vibes and then the entertainment venues close a few hours later. It doesn’t meet what tourists want.”
          The Tourism and Sports Minister insisted Thailand has to accommodate tourism industry needs, adding it is no different from when Thai people travel abroad. Phiphat revealed that a non-profit organization opposed the idea. But, he said, tourists or travellers would still buy drinks from shops if bars were closed early. Moreover, the authorities would not be able to monitor the behavior of people that way so it made sense to have travellers drinking in a safe area under the watchful eye of a controlled area. The minister also stated that entertainment venues would stay open late in secret even though the government has prohibited late drinking hours.

          “If we can set up a special zone and have good management, unexpected incidents and crimes will be reduced. For example, the latest fire at a (Mountain B) nightclub in Chon Buri. If we have good management and protection measures, the incident would never have happened.”
          Phiphat made it known he is attending the Full Moon Party on Koh Pha Ngan tomorrow. The visit is to check whether everything is being operated under Thai licensing laws.

          “Someone told me that cannabis is sold everywhere on the beach. I want to know if it’s real or not. If sellers want to sell cannabis, they have to ask for permission. They have to avoid causing public nuisance like cannabis smoke because someone is allergic to it.”
          The Tourism and Sports Minister expect the CCSA to give the go ahead on Friday, August 19.2022


          • #6
            Phuket ‘ready’ to open nightclubs until 4am

            The Phuket Tourism Association is pushing for later closing times in nightclubs. Entertainment venues in Phuket, southern Thailand, are “ready” to open until 4am, according to the Chairman of the Phuket Tourism Association Thanet Tanipirayakit. The association hopes to extend the closing times of entertainment venues on Patong beach’s Bangla Road from 2am to 4am in a Phuket Sandbox-style pilot scheme.

            Thanet says that Bangla Road, a Walking Street, is full of bars and entertainment venues whose management all agree that opening later would be a benefit to them. If the project is a roaring success for Phuket’s tourism industry, then the Thai government could consider extending the later closing time to entertainment venues across the nation. However, the project needs the green light to get going…

            “Entrepreneurs of Patong have responded positively to the idea of later closing times and want to start the experiment as soon as possible… but it solely depends on the ministry and relevant agencies because it is a case of the law,” said Thanet.
            Thanet cited the success of the Phuket sandbox in navigating the reopening of Thailand’s tourism industry during the pandemic as a premise for the pilot scheme. Small hotels should also be allowed permits to open late. The chairman did not comment on exactly who the idea would be presented to and when.

            Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt has expressed support for Thailand’s entertainment venues to be open until 4am. He says it will eliminate “under the table” deals and put everything under the law, making nightlife safer for everybody.

            The governor said that some nightclubs in Bangkok do open until 4:00 am or later and officials are aware of it. The “under the table” deals that allow them to get away with it mean that safety inspections are bypassed. Nightclub safety in Thailand was brought to the forefront after the avoidable tragedy at Mountain B nightclub in Chon Buri’s Sattahip district on August 5. Initially, 13 people died in the fire that night.

            Two months on, the fire claimed a total of 24 victims, after 11 people succumbed to their injuries and died in hospital. Many more are still injured.


            • #7
              POLL: Majority opposed to 4am venue curfew

              A new poll shows that, despite vocal advocates and support amongst tourists, themajority of Thai people don’t believe that nightlife entertainment venues should be allowed to open until 4:00 am. The poll found that 48.6% of people believe that 2am is a late enough time for bars and clubs to close. Only 40.6% of people believe that some or all entertainment venues should be allowed to open until later.

              The National Institute of Development Administration conducted the poll by interviewing 1,310 people. The interviews took place between December 23 and December 27. The NIDA Pole address the current debate over whether opening nightlife venues until 4am would do more good in the boost it would give to tourism revenue, or do more harm than the number of drunk driving accidents and deaths that could occur.

              Click image for larger version  Name:	Poll.jpg Views:	0 Size:	227.3 KB ID:	6965

              Minister of Tourism and Sports Pipat Ratchakitprakarn has been a vocal supporter of the curfew extension ever since visiting the Full Moon Party in August and seeing the huge benefit of the tourism that the all-night party brings. Opponents of the extension believe that it will drive people to drink more, get more drunk driving accidents, and increase crime.

              After government discussions of the curfew extension proposal was either passed over or rejected, supporters of the 4am curfew scaled back their efforts and pushed for Bangla Walking Street, the most popular party zone in Phuket to be chosen as a pilot location.

              The poll found that 48.6% of people interviewed thought that 2:00 am was late enough for entertainment venues to be open. They cited worries about safety and the negative impact could have on neighbours around entertainment venues. Another 7.2% went a step further and said that 2:00 am was already too late for bars to be open and the late night drinking and partying leads to an increase in accidents and crime. and 3.2% were extremely conservative and said no entertainment venue should be open at night ever, citing the harm to area residents and statistics pointing to higher crime and accident rates.

              On the other side, 26.3% of those polled supported a 4am closing time for entertainment venues, but only in tourist areas, according to the Bangkok Post. They said the later opening would help all the tourism businesses that were so badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and support the tourism recovery.

              Finally, 14.3% of people polled say the 4am curfew should be enacted throughout all of Thailand. They believe it will bring income to not just entertainment venues, but other businesses like taxis or late night eateries that will reap benefits from patrons out later.

              Thai Public Health Minister Says No to 4 AM Pub Closing, Except Possibly in Popular Tourists Area Like Pattaya and Phuket

              On Sunday, February 19th, Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul told a meeting of the Thai Health Promotion Foundation (ThaiHealth) board that his ministry opposes a proposal from the Tourism Ministry to expand the legal closing times for nightspots to 4:00 am from 2:00 am.

              The minister backed his opposition with concerns over public welfare and safety, saying road accidents could rise if pubs are allowed to operate up to 4:00 am. He added that during the 2023 New Year period, road accidents significantly decreased by 20% compared to last year due to the cooperation of all parties concerned, including ThaiHealth for their road safety campaign.

              Anutin disclosed, however, that the Public Health Ministry may agree to let nightlife venues in some key tourist areas stay open until 4:00 on a case-by-case basis. Note: this possibly means itt depends on the amount of "Tea Money" every bar owner pays to the BiB. These areas, for example, could include Bangkok’s Khaosan Road, Pattaya, and Phuket’s Bangla Walking Street. The matter requires more discussion and thought, however, Anutin added, as well as partnership from local authorities in those areas.


              • #8
                Police to blanket Pattaya area to enforce 2:00 a.m. bar closings

                Pol. Lt. Gen. Surajit Chingnawan, deputy commander for Provincial Police Region 2, with the heads of police in Pattaya and the surrounding districts to ensure that bars and nightclubs close at 2:00 a.m. With hopes dead for extending Pattaya’s nightlife hours to 4:00 a.m., regional police met to ensure all the bars close by 2:00 a.m.

                Pol. Lt. Gen. Surajit Chingnawan, deputy commander for Provincial Police Region 2, met Feb.15.2023 with the heads of the Pattaya, Nongprue, Najomtien, Huay Yai and Sriracha police stations. Surajit said inspections of entertainment areas must be done regularly to catch any venue open after legal hours, allowing minors to enter or looking the other way when it comes to drugs and weapons.

                Station chiefs also were told to break off crowds of party people congregating after bars closed and run regular checkpoints for drunk drivers, drugs and guns.