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Pattaya reopening is likely to be postponed, while the city’s population has lost all purchasing power


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This coastal town plans to adjust its reopening plan as Thailand may not be able to control its high infection rate and potentially provide more vaccinations than it is until the fourth quarter.

Thanet Supornsahasrungsi, acting chairman of the Chonburi provincial tourism council, said tourism organizations acknowledged that plans to reopen two districts to international tourists in September could be delayed as the country struggles with a severe vaccine shortage during this third wave, which marks the reopening of the country. influence.

“We may not be able to open as planned if the province cannot build herd immunity before the deadline. Even if we reopened, no tourists would visit us if there is a widespread pandemic or tourist sentiment is bad,” Mr Thanet said.

Meanwhile, a handful of operators in Pattaya still hope to earn 30% of the 2019 revenue generated in 2019 to support business in the upcoming peak season, as the prolonged outbreak and shutdown plague tourism in the city.

In 2019, Chonburi received 276 billion baht in tourism revenue from 18.6 million visitors. With the pandemic last year, income plummeted to 66 billion baht while tourist numbers fell to 6.97 million.

The acting chairman said that even with Phuket fully reopened to vaccinated foreigners, strict preventive measures and soft demand in the early stages are causing many shops, restaurants and entertainment venues to remain closed, discouraging travellers from booking a vacation to Thailand.

Thanet said the situation in Pattaya is similar to that in the Andaman Islands, especially with local tourists being restricted by the lockdown order.

“Some say domestic tourism to areas like Pattaya will benefit from the domestic market once local tourists are allowed to travel. But people are not making domestic trips for the time being because they have weaker purchasing power,” he said. “This is the most critical problem for our economy.”

As for foreign travel regulations, Thailand will be downgraded to the UK’s red list, Chiravadee Khunsub, director of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s London office, said the UK government will review its country list on August 4 or 5, with Thailand, likely will be added to the red list after the Philippines moves from pink to red.

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