Vang Vieng, Lao PDR

“Pattaya Move On” tourist project planning continues despite government raising the possibility of postponing the reopening plan for several provinces

Photo: The Pattaya News

The “Pattaya Move On” tourist program planning will continue regardless of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s (TAT) consideration of postponing the reopening plan in several tourist destinations in October, the President of the Pattaya Business and Tourism Association (PBTA) stated today.

The response followed TAT Governor Yuthasak Supasorn’s announcement on Saturday, July 24th, that the TAT’s plans to reopen 10 pilot popular tourist provinces, including Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phetchaburi, Chonburi, Phuket, Surat Thani, Krabi, Phang Nga, and Buriram, to welcome foreign tourists by the end of October 2021, might be difficult to launch in time as the number of daily infections remained significantly high, especially in Bangkok, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phetchaburi, and Chonburi.

TPN Media notes that this program has NOT officially been postponed or cancelled, but the TAT Governor did say that the four provinces listed, due to ongoing Covid-19 infections, may have to have their plans for a “reopening” similar to Phuket or Koh Surat Thani, postponed, possibly several months. However, it is still too early to tell, according to the Governor.

PBTA President Boonanan Phattanasin revealed today that the “Pattaya Move On” project planning will still continue despite the TAT statements of a possible postponement as the project had already been in process and in line with the reopening date.

“If the situation improved and there was no immediate support plan by the official reopening date, it could cause problems and the opening of the city would have to be postponed anyways. Therefore, we will continue planning for a reopening of Pattaya to foreign and domestic tourists, with all business sectors operating, as soon as possible,” the president added.

If the city was eventually unable to be reopened for a sealed route style program on September 1st, as originally scheduled due to the high rate of the Covid-19 infections, the private sector would not approve of reopening its businesses and welcoming tourists as well. However, the planning would be still going forward to make the city ready for reopening in the near future.

n a nutshell, TPN media notes, the basic plan on the books for Chonburi is essentially to get Pattaya, Thailand’s third most visited city for foreign tourists, and second when combined with domestic tourism, up and running. This would likely be done with a program similar to Koh Samui at first, in which tourists would spend the first seven days at a resort or hotel while being able to take day trips on “sealed routes” to approved locations and go anywhere in the hotel or resort. After seven days, they would be allowed to go anywhere in Pattaya and after fourteen could leave the province. If this plan succeeded, the province would likely switch to a “Phuket” model in October or November, in which one could have the freedom to roam anywhere in Pattaya, with tracking, from day one after passing a Covid-19 test.

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