Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Thu May 14, 2020 4:12 pm

Part of the article on the "Planning to go to Thailand any time soon? Read this" topic says, "Most foreign nationals will not be allowed to enter Thailand for most of this year" (see: https://www.gaybuttonthai.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=10378 )

If that is correct, that means for quite some time to come, the bars, gay hotels - gay everything - once they're permitted to reopen will have to rely mainly on customers already living in Thailand. That would be mainly those of us living in Thailand on retirement visas.

And even when Thailand does reopen for foreign tourists, when will the airlines start flying to Thailand again?

Considering the problems the bars were experiencing even before anyone ever heard of Covid-19, I'm wondering how the bars will be able to survive at all, even if they are allowed to open for business tomorrow. On top of that, no one has any idea how much longer masks and social distancing will continue to be required, meaning even fewer customers allowed in the bars for who knows how long?

When Thailand finally does reopen for tourists, how many gays will even be going to Thailand for quite some time and how much money will they have available to spend when they get here?

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Jun » Thu May 14, 2020 5:44 pm

I believe the minimum age for a retirement visa is 50.
So anyone who qualifies for one is already at higher than average risk from covid & would presumably be less likely to visit bars, at least for a while.
Eventually boredom might set in and people might venture out.

Since we have a few board members retired to Thailand, would any of you contemplate visiting bars in the next 2~3 months, or even take the lower risk option of finding a lad on a dating app ?
[Assumption: Dating app = potential virus exposure to 1 person; Bar = potential virus exposure to more people]

I'm over 50 and still taking reasonable care in the UK. As I'm not exactly at the top of the risk profile, I might relax things a bit in a few weeks.

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Thu May 14, 2020 6:35 pm

Jun wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 5:44 pm
would any of you contemplate visiting bars in the next 2~3 months, or even take the lower risk option of finding a lad on a dating app ?
I doubt the bars will be open by then, but for me the decision would depend on the safety precautions at the bars and whether anything can be going on other than simply looking at the boys.

As for the apps, I have no fear about meeting boys on the apps, at least in Pattaya, because there has been no new cases in Pattaya for 3 weeks now. If it stays that way, and the boy of interest can also convince me he has been in Pattaya continuously since no new cases, I don't see much of a problem.

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Bangkokian » Sat May 16, 2020 5:38 pm

Jun wrote:
Wed May 13, 2020 9:46 pm
Google tells me the minimum legal drinking age in Thailand in 20. Like many other countries, I expect a good proportion of the population have broken that law.
Is that legal age to drink or to purchase alcohol?
Certainly in Bangkok, persons of 18 and up can work in a bar but on their free days cannot come into the bar.

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Jun » Sat May 16, 2020 6:02 pm

Gaybutton wrote:
Thu May 14, 2020 6:35 pm
As for the apps, I have no fear about meeting boys on the apps, at least in Pattaya, because there has been no new cases in Pattaya for 3 weeks now. If it stays that way, and the boy of interest can also convince me he has been in Pattaya continuously since no new cases, I don't see much of a problem.
Well, if those assumptions are correct, I hope you're supporting that part of the economy.

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Sat May 16, 2020 6:51 pm

Jun wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 6:02 pm
Well, if those assumptions are correct, I hope you're supporting that part of the economy.
Gaybutton wrote:
Mon Apr 20, 2020 7:53 am
Some of us in Thailand are contributing to the food charities and/or are trying to help individuals.

In my own case, right now I am supporting 2 boys I have known for years and fully trust. They lost their jobs and have no source of income. I am making sure they don't lose their rooms and have money to eat and buy necessities. It's not cheap, but not prohibitively expensive for me. I'm glad to be able to do it.

I'm sure others are doing similar things.
Now you know what part of the economy I am supporting . . .

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Jun » Sat May 16, 2020 7:13 pm

Considering your previous upbeat comments about low risk, I was thinking a favourable risk assessment leads to support by providing custom, rather than philanthropy.

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Sat May 16, 2020 10:01 pm

Jun wrote:
Sat May 16, 2020 7:13 pm
Considering your previous upbeat comments about low risk, I was thinking a favourable risk assessment leads to support by providing custom, rather than philanthropy.
Yes, you'd think so, wouldn't you? Actually, you have no way of knowing unless I tell you. You can try to guess, but you won't know. Your first three guesses are whether I'm going to tell you . . .

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Tue May 19, 2020 7:46 am

Today marks two months since most tourist attractions and nightlife closed in Pattaya and most of Thailand-when will it be reopened?

By Adam Judd

Monday, 18 May 2020

Today marks two months, March 18th, 2020, when the bars and nightlife in Pattaya (and all over Thailand, and most of the world) went dark, originally for two weeks, to help prevent the potential spread of the Covid-19 Coronavirus. This was shortly followed by nearly everything except for essential services.

Two months later, the bar, hospitality, most large tourist attractions, Koh Larn and the other islands and massive nightlife industry remain closed, which accounts for almost 80% of Pattaya’s overall revenue, leaving the city almost a ghost town. Pattaya is known worldwide as a tourism hot spot, attracting millions of visitors a year and along with Phuket have likely been hit harder than any other area in the country being so dependent on tourism, hospitality and nightlife.

It is worth noting that a significant part of the tourism in Pattaya, which surprises most foreigners, is domestic, including a large domestic Thai nightlife and bar industry which attracts Thai’s from across the country, with clubs like Bone and Differ leading the way. Hotels remain closed in Pattaya legally until at least the end of the month. Many tourist attractions, like Nong Nooch Gardens, surrounding islands, Cartoon and Ramayana Water Park and the open zoo are also very popular with domestic Thai tourists. Despite a ban on international tourists at this time, many of these venues would still be able to attract domestic customers-when they are reopened.

Pattaya and the Chonburi area, the province containing Pattaya, have not had a single case in weeks, Pattaya City in well over a month. Not a single patient remains under treatment for the disease in the entire Chonburi area. (At least locally spread. The Pattaya News notes that a state quarantine facility for those Thai nationals who have been directly repatriated from overseas is in Chonburi. These individuals go directly from the airport to the facility and have no interaction with the general public.)

Regardless of these statistics, the hospitality and nightlife industry remain closed as officials and leaders, including Pattaya’s former Mayor, discuss exactly how to safely reopen the industry and get people back to work.

There have been some bright spots - Malls reopened this week and restaurants have been open for the past two weeks throughout the city, although they are not legally allowed to sell alcohol and are taking the reopening and rules with caution at the direction of the Thai Government. Most stores, dentists, retail stores, clothing shops, etc. can now legally open. However, entertainment, with a few minor exceptions like Golf and Fishing parks, remain closed out of precaution. Massage shops, closed the same day as bars, remain closed country wide, another major employer of the country.

The CCSA has said that entertainment venues and tourist attractions are the riskiest venues to reopen, but like China, Taiwan, Cambodia, Vietnam and other countries have done, they will slowly get every business back to work with proper precautions. The CCSA, like the rest of the world, was disturbed to hear when South Korea believed they had a second outbreak caused by a single man in a bar in Seoul several weeks ago that led to another 150 plus confirmed cases, but as of today only two cases were additionally found after tens of thousands of cases were traced and tested, showing that proper tracing and tracking does work.

Meanwhile, business owners in Pattaya have also been meeting to deliver plans and ideas to the local and regional leaders that will go to the team in Bangkok, including the current former Mayor of Pattaya, to help gather ideas on how to get things open.

The next phase, as long as cases of the Covid-19 Coronavirus stay under control in the country, which is likely to happen with all borders and international foreign visitors banned, is set for two weeks, around June first. The CCSA states they will be looking at the overall results of malls over the next week before coming together to make decisions on what the third phase will bring. A fourth phase, which is supposed to be the final phase, according to the CCSA, is set for mid June. However, as recently as last week the CCSA advised based on the situation some businesses “could” be pushed back further, specifically naming massive concerts, stadium sports with huge crowds or events.

Nobody can answer for sure when the lights will come back on in Pattaya, but as food lines continue to stretch into the thousands locally, it is clear that some further decisions will have to be made soon. Although it will be some time for international tourism to return and the CAAT has banned all international flights through June, domestic tourism and local residents are a larger chunk of the industry than many expect and many tourist attraction owners only want the option to open and start the long path to recovery.

The Pattaya News will keep local readers updated on the future phases and any announcements, as always.

At this stage, with two months behind us and many businesses, like malls and restaurants and department stores, closed but now reopened, the longest period of closure is “likely” behind us, but not guaranteed.

https://thepattayanews.com/2020/05/18/t ... re-opened/

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Re: Pattaya's entertainment venue crisis

Post by Gaybutton » Sat May 23, 2020 12:33 pm

Sex workers left in cold by outbreak

Up to 200,000 made jobless by Covid-19

by Thana Boonlert

23 May, 2020

Thousands of sex workers have been denied access to relief cash amid the coronavirus outbreak despite their contribution to the once-thriving tourism industry, a forum was told.

Suparnee Pongruengphant, the project manager for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion at the United Nations Development Programme, said an agency survey has shown that up to 200,000 sex workers in Thailand suddenly lost their jobs when the government ordered the closure of nightlife venues in late March to curb the spread of Covid-19.

"It is sad to say that the government is not doing enough to support this group of people and their immediate needs. They are denied support because they are not categorised as [formal] labourers and legalised in Thailand. … [They should be] entitled to the same protections and welfare services as other professions," she told the online forum on Thursday.

The event, "Helping Thailand's most vulnerable: Sex workers & Covid-19, the fallout", was held by the Foreign Correspondents' Club of Thailand.

Ms Suparnee said sex workers are marginalised because many of them do not have access to education or opportunities to seek employment in the formal sector, forcing them into the sex trade. It is even more difficult for migrant and transgender prostitutes to seek community support.

On May 19, CCSA spokesman Taweesilp Visanuyothin said the government will reopen nightlife venues, with adjustments, if the number of new daily cases stays in single digits for the foreseeable future. But Ms Suparnee said when business resumes, sex workers will be put at risk of infection because a vaccine is still unavailable and the nature of their work requires close contact with clients.

"The fact that many of them don't have enough savings to cover health and medical costs makes the situation even worse for them," she said.

Assoc Prof Chalidaporn Songsamphan, a political science lecturer at Thammasat University and president of the Service Workers In Group Foundation, said many sex workers cannot gain access to state assistance because prostitution has been "an elephant in the room" despite their contribution to the tourism industry.

"We surveyed female sex workers in Bangkok who applied for the 5,000-baht monthly cash handout. Those who outed themselves didn't get any support. There is no place for sex workers. … I don't think this government will even think about the existence of the sex industry," she said.

https://www.bangkokpost.com/thailand/ge ... y-outbreak

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