Grilled highly venomous octopus was found to be sold at Pathum Thani market in Thailand
It was found that octopus containing highly venomous octopus was sold on skewers at the Pathum Thani market in Thailand. The Department of Marine and Coastal Resources posted a photo of the octopus on its Facebook page and warned that when purchasing skewered octopus, be very careful if it is a venomous octopus.
The characteristic of venomous octopus is that it is about the size of a golf ball and has a ring-shaped blue color around it. It is a deadly poison, and if eaten, it causes motor paralysis and respiratory arrests within minutes. The power of venom is very storong venomous that it can kill 26 humans, and there is no antivenom. Also, the venom can withstand heat up to 200 degrees Celsius, so burning an octopus cannot remove the toxins.
At markets in Thailand, you can buy and eat various skewers at open-air stalls, which is one of the pleasures of going to the market, but please be careful about venomous octopus.
Online sales and promotion of alcoholic beverages will be banned in Thailand from December 7th
A law banning the online sale and promotion of alcoholic beverages on the Internet in Thailand will come into effect on December 7, 2020. However, this law does not include electronic payments when paying at retail stores, restaurants and bars. Violations of this law will result in imprisonment of up to 6 months or a fine of up to 10,000 baht.
In Thailand, there is a time restriction to sell alcoholic beverages at stores, which are 11: 00-14: 00 and 17: 00-24: 00. In addition, there are several days in a year when alcoholic beverages are prohibited from being sold. Since it is difficult to confirm that these regulations are being followed online, online sales themselves have been banned.
An outdoor music event "moobaan wonder by Wonderfruit" will be held in Pattaya
Thailand's largest outdoor music event "Wonderfruit Festival" is held every December at "The Fields at Siam Country Club" in Pattaya with the theme of music, art, lifestyle and nature. This event was scheduled to be held from December 10th (Thursday) to December 14th (Monday) in 2020, but this event was canceled this year due to factors such as Covid-19 infection control and the inability to attract foreign customers. The event was postponed in December 2021.
The "Wonderfruit Festival" has been cancelled, but an alternative event, "moobaan wonder by Wonderfruit," will be held at the same venue.
The event will be held on 5 weekends(Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays) from December 2020 to January 2021. Specifically, December 4-6 2020, December 11-13 2020, December 25-27 2020, January 8-10 2021, January 15-17 2021. Similar to the "Wonderfruit Festival", the event will feature art, lifestyle, nature-themed events and various outdoor music spaces.
Ticket price is
Full Season Pass: 6,800 THB
Friday 1day pass: 690THB
Saturday 1day pass: 1,290THB
Sunday 1day pass: 1,290THB
1weekend pass: 2,190THB
Not only the tourism industry but also the entertainment industry has been hit hard by the influence of Covid-19. We hope that "moobaan wonder by Wonderfruit" will be the vitality of the ailing Thai entertainment industry. Everyone, let's visit them.
For more information, please refer to the official website of "moobaan wonder by Wonderfruit".
Thailand plans to procure 13 million Covid-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca in 2021
The other day, it was announced that the Covid-19 vaccine, which is being jointly developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University, has an efficacy rate of 70%. The AstraZeneca says they are planning to be able to distribute the vaccine worldwide 3.1 billion does a year.
The Thai government wants to start domestic production and vaccination of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine in the first six months of 2021. First, they plan to procure 26 million doses from AstraZeneca for 13 million Thais in the first 6 months of 2021. In addition, from the middle of 2021, production of this vaccine will start not only for Thailand but also for neighboring countries such as ASEAN.
In December 2021, the Thai Vaccine Board will be expected to identify the first priority groups to vaccinate. It is expected that elderly and those with underlying conditions, the same categories prioritised for the flu vaccine, and those most at risk of developing serious complications from Covid-19 will be prioritized.
Currently, Australian airline Qantas has announced that they will require passengers to show proof of vaccination of Covid-19 vaccine. In the future, there may be more places where you will be required to show such a certificate, so we are waiting for the start of vaccination as soon as possible.
Tourism Authority of Thailand Offers Special Package to support Foreign Tourists travel in Thailand
Thailand strictly restricts foreign tourists from entering the country to prevent Covid-19 infection now. However, Thai tourism industry has been devastated. Under such severe circumstances, the Thai government is proposing various measures to accept foreign tourists to rescue Thai tourism industry.
According to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), the Centre for Economic Situation Administration(CESA) has approved TAT's "Amazing Thailand Plus Special Package" project, which provides foreign tourists with special hotels and transportation packages. This package not only allows tourists to book quarantine flights and hotels(ASQ) but also provides special discounts and other assistance to foreign tourists who have completed quarantine.
The contents of the package announced at this time are :
“book two nights and get one free” for hotels in Bangkok
“book two nights in Bangkok and get a free one in a hotel near the city” (with TAT arranging taxi)
“book three nights in Bangkok and get two nights free in a different province” (with TAT paying for the flight).
There are these three packages.
The package can be booked by foreign tourists from December 1st 2020 to March 31st 2021. The actual trip can take place until April 30, 2021. TAT will allocate a budget of approximately 20 million for this package.
Oxford AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine has up to 90% efficacy
As introduced on this site yesterday, the Thai government made a reservation for 26 million Covid-19 vaccines from AstraZeneca and contributed an emergency budget of about 6 billion baht for the purchase. As a result, as soon as the safety of AstraZeneca's vaccine was confirmed, vaccination could be started in Thailand.
The AstraZeneca vaccine was announced on November 23, 2020, and as a result of a clinical trial of the Covid-19 vaccine currently being jointly developed with the University of Oxford, it was infected without causing serious side effects. It was clarified that the effective rate that can prevent the virus is about 90%.
The trial has been conducted in the United Kingdom and Brazil and has confirmed efficacy in several patterns.
The effective rate is 90% when the full dose is dosed at intervals of one month after half the dose is dosed.
The effective rate is 62% when the full dose is dosed twice with an interval of 1 month.
The average effective rate is 70% in the analysis that comprehensively combines these two types of dosing regimes.
All of these results are statistically significant. In all cases, no serious events were identified regarding the safety of the vaccine.
AstraZeneca is preparing to submit clinical trial data to drug authorities in each country, and at the same time aims to be designated as an emergency drug by the World Health Organization (WHO).
Once AstraZeneca's vaccination begins in Thailand, it will be the savior of the dying Thai tourism industry and Thai economy. We are waiting for the start of vaccination as soon as possible.
Thai government reserved 26 million doses of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine
At the Cabinet meeting on November 17, the Ministry of Health approved the reservation of 26 million doses of AstraZeneca's Covid-19 vaccine and an emergency budget of about 6 billion baht for the reservation.
In addition, 2,379 million baht will be allocated to vaccine development costs by the National Vaccine Research Institute in Thailand, and 3,590 million baht will be allocated to the Disease Control Bureau.
According to Health Minister Anutin, "By reserving a vaccine from AstraZeneca UK, Thailand will be able to obtain the vaccine immediately after confirming the safety of the vaccine of AstraZeneca."
681 tourists will arrive in November under Special Tourist Visa
According to the governeor of Tourism Authority of Thailand(TAT), 681 tourists who received the Special Tourist Visa(STV) has arrived and will arrive to Thailand in November, 2020. Average of 3.3 million tourists arrive in Thailand in November every year. It is an undeniable fact that only 681 tourists are unusually few, but on the other hand, It is also true that the number of tourists who arrived to Thailand is double that of October last month and Thailand is making very slow and gradual but certain progress toward acceptance of foreign tourists.
Of the 681 foreign tourists, 263 have already entered Thailand and completed 14 days of mandatory quarantine, 134 are in quarantine, and 284 are scheduled to enter the Thailnd by the end of November.
TAT is optimistic about the acceptance of 681 foreign tourists. However, foreign tourists entering Thailand under STV have to pay enormous costs, and it cannot be expected that the number of tourists using this system will increase in the future. Also, the airline went bankrupt. It is estimated that 5 million people will be unemployed out of the tourism industry. This is the reality.
At this time, no concrete measures have been issued to ease immigration restrictions for foreign tourists. The proposal to reduce the 14-day quarantine to 10 days has just been rejected the other day.
If nothing is done, Thailand's tourism industry will be destroyed, and there is no doubt that it will be a big blow to the Thai economy. It is hoped that restrictions on the acceptance of foreign tourists will be relaxed as soon as possible.
Tourism Authority of Thailand launches travel campaign for foreign residents
Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT), in collaboration with partners such as Thailand Hotel Association (THA), Bangkok Airways, Air Asia, Nok Air, launched "Expat Travel Bonus", a campaign for foreigners living in Thailand. The campaign offers special discounts to foreigners who travel in Thailand.
Special discounts from this promotion apply when booking directly with participating hotels and airlines.
More than 300 hotels throughout Thailand participated in this campaign. Foreign travelers can get a 1,000 baht discount per night reservation, and the longer you stay, the higher the discount will be applied.
Click here for a list of participating hotels.
The discount period is until December 31, 2020. There is an upper limit on the number of booking and it is on a first-come, first-served basis. The user must show a passport that can prove that he / she is a foreigner living in Thailand.
Bangkok taxis impose additional fees on large luggage
According to the Thai Ministry of Transport, Bangkok meter taxis can now charge an additional fee for large passenger luggage. However, it is not possible to charge for wheelchairs and canes. It has been implemented since November 17, 2020.
The taxi baggage fees under the new system are as follows.
・ If the width, height, or length of the luggage exceeds 26 inches (66.04 cm), a fee of 20 baht or less per piece will be charged.
・ Fee of 20 baht or less per piece for the third piece of luggage.
・ For golf bags, bicycles, serve boards, sporting goods, musical instruments, etc. of 50 inches (127 cm) or more, the additional fee is 100 baht or less per piece.
・ Fee of 100 baht or less per piece of equipment, tools, appliances, etc. of 50 inches (27 cm) or more.
The taxi driver must inform the passengers in advance about the additional fees.
Pattaya Fireworks Festival will be held on November 27-28, 2020
The Pattaya Fireworks Festival, which had been postponed to prevent Covid-19 infection, will be held at Pattaya Beach from November 27 to 28, 2020.
This Pattaya Fireworks Festival is quite grand and it is expected that many domestic tourists from all over Thailand will visit Pattaya.
Considerable congestion is expected, and various crimes such as pickpockets may occur. In particular, the economy of Pattaya is now dying due to the influence of Covid-19, and it has been reported that public order in Pattaya has deteriorated. Tourists who will visit the Pattaya Fireworks Festival should be careful about troubles and enjoy the fireworks with good manners.
Thai travel agents are proposing opening Thai borders to tourists from “low risk” Chinese provinces
8 months ago, foreign tourists were restricted from entering Thailand to prevent the spread of the coronavirus infection. Entry with The Special Tourist Visa began in mid-October last month. However, only about a few hundred tourists have entered the country in the last month or so. According to the Thai Travel Agency Association, Thailand needs to speed up its acceptance of foreign tourists.
Thai Travel agents warn that about 2 million people could lose their jobs if foreign tourists are not allowed to enter Thailand furthermore. Thai Travel agents are also proposing that Chinese tourists in areas within China that are considered "low risk" for Covid-19 open the Thai border.
A petition requesting the government to allow travelers from 22 states in China to enter Thailand was filed by the Ministry of Tourism and Sports and ATTA President Wichit Prakobsol. Twenty-two states, including Zhenjiang, Anhui, Chongqing, Hebei, Hubei, Hunan and Fujian, are considered Covid-19 low-risk areas.
Wichit argues that if the government opens borders with tourists from those 22 Chinese states, 300,000 foreign tourists could enter Thailand each month. He says the move could generate 15 billion baht of revenue each month.
Wichit also said that since the pandemic of the coronavirus, 150,000 workers in the tourism industry have been dismissed from more than 10,000 companies. About 90% of the dismissed people are unemployed temporarily, but if travel restrictions remain strict, about 2 million people in the tourism industry could be unemployed.
Qatar Airways is back in Phuket
Qatar Airways has suspended flights to Phuket Island since March 2020 due to the pandemic of the coronavirus, but they dicideted to resume some limited flights to Phuket. All Middle Eastern airlines are planning a weekly flight between Doha and Phuket starting December 4, 2020 and seeking permission from Thai authorities to increase destinations after December 10.
Qatar Airways already operates flights between Doha and Bangkok twice daily for Thai returnees, permited visitors to Thailand and those with work permits. Passengers on these flights must present a certificate of non-covid-19 to the flight prior to boarding and must enter quarantine after arriving in Thailand.
Phuket will be the gateway from overseas in addition to Bangkok, it is expected to be a step to make foreign tourists to return to Thailand..
Fire on Sukumvit Soi 31 in Bangkok, now under control
On November 14, 2020, around 1:45 p.m., there were four or five major explosions at Sukumvit Soi 31. An electric transformer exploded just outside Sawasdee Wittaya School and a fire broke out in a building adjacent to the school building. Emergency services immediately rushed to the scene and within 10 minutes the fire became under their control.
A large plume of smoke was blowing from the scene of the explosion, but no one is injured. However, there will be a power outage in the area until officials can confirm the damage and repair status of the fire site.
Restrictions on entry of heavy-duty trucks into Bangkok
According to the Bangkok Metropolitan Government, as one of Bangkok's measures to reduce growing serious air pollution, they has decided to ban heavy-duty trucks of six or more wheels from entering Bangkok from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. between December 2020 and February 2021.
It does not rain during the cool season and the polluted atmosphere tends to stay in Thailand currently, and worsening air pollution is becoming more serious.
Thai Airways posted a surge in net loss in Q3 of 2020
Thai Airways announced that its 2020 deficit more than doubled in 2019 and posted a huge loss in the third quarter of 2020 after the Covid-19 pandemic locked down the world.
On November 12, 2020, Acting President Changxin Treenuchagron said Thai Airways' net loss for the third quarter of the fiscal year ended September 31, 2020 was 21.53 billion baht, up from 4.68 billion baht in the same period last year.
The number of passengers on Thai Airways in the third quarter of 2020 decreased by 92% compared to the same period in 2019, to just 490,000. Thai Airways is under financial rehabilitation approved by the bankruptcy court and has a huge cumulative debt of 28 billion baht at the end of the second quarter of 2020. To reduce costs, their 34 planes are on sale and they are looking for 5,000 employees to retire through an early retirement program.
During the 9 months from January to September 2020, 6.7 million foreign visitors visited Thailand. The same period in 2019 was about 30 million, which was a decrease of about 77%. In addition, all 6.7 million tourists visited Thailand in the first quarter of 2020 before Covit-19 banned foreign tourists from entering Thailand. During the 7 months from mid-March to mid-October 2020, the number of tourists from overseas was zero.
Tourism is an important source of income for Thailand's economy and accounts for about 20% of gross domestic product. If foreign tourists are expected not to be able to visit Thailand any further, there is no doubt that it will have a major impact not only on Thai Airways but also on the Thai economy as a whole. It is hoped that the day when Thailand overflows with foreign tourists will come back as soon as possible..
North Taurid meteor shower visible in Thailand on November 12, 2020
According to the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand, the Northern Taurid meteor shower will be visible from Thailand around 7 pm on November 12, 2020. Very bright meteors are expected to illuminate the night sky. About five meteors can be photographed across the sky in an hour, and those meteors can be bright meteors called "fireballs."
According to Space.com, the Taurid meteor stream is a debris left by the comet, with much larger fragments than those shed by the comet. Large debris burns out in the Earth's atmosphere, causing an unusually bright "fireball." The annual meteor showers usually happens during the last three months of each year.
Thai government has relaxed tourist visa criteria for Europe countries
According to The Tourism Authority of Thailand(TAT), Thai government has relaxed tourist visa requirements for some “Covid-19 medium-risk” countries to re-start international tourism. The tourists with tourist visa can stay in Thailand for up to 60 days, and they have the possibility of extending their period of stay up to 90 days. 1,465 foreigners had obtained the tourist visa as of 5 November. The three most popular types are retirement visas, privileged entry visas and the Special Tourist Visa.
The applicants for the STV must be the tourists from low-risk countries, officials are relaxing visa criteria for the tourists from Scandinavia and other European countries currently considered as medium-risk ones.
However, the applicant must meet considerable financial requirements, such as savings of at least 500,000 baht, health insurance coverage of at least 100,000 U.S. dollars, and outpatient insurance of 40,000 baht. Applicants must also take the Covid-19 test 72 hours prior to the trip and have a medical certificate. After that, a 14-day quarantine (at their own expense) must be carried out upon arrival.
All tourists from China are negative in the Covid-19 test so far
According to Thai health officials, all of the tourists from China who arrived in the Thailand on the Special Tourist Visa(STV) have passed negative for Covid-19.
On the other hand, Thai health officials still press the Thai public to continue the safety and hygiene manners that the people in Kingdom have been continuing since the start of the pandemic (i.e. wear a mask whilst in public, keep social distancing and wash your hands frequently etc.) because some asymptomatic cases tested positive outside of quarantine facilities.
STV is now issued to countries that the Thai government regards as a "low risk" of Covid-19. This low risk countries includes China, Taiwan, Vietnam and South Korea. Australia and New Zealand are also in good situation, but the those two governments still imposes strict restrictions on overseas travel now..
Thailand and China resume talks to launch "Travel Bubble" by Chinese New Year 2021
A "travel bubble" that allows the tourists of countries with low risk of the Covid-19 to come and go freely without an mandotary quarantine period. It was discussed temporarily in Thailand, but the discussion was made stopped due to concerns of Covid-19 caused by public opinion. The discussion on "Travel Bubble" between Thailand and China have resumed allegedlly.
The Chinese government wants a "travel bubble" with Thailand, and thailand's Ministry of Tourism and Sports has be launched plans to welcome Chinese people to Thailand as the first group without quarantine before Chinese New Year 2021.
According to Pipat Ratchakit Prakan, minister of Thailand's Ministry of Tourism and Sports, the Chinese Embassy will first talk with the Chinese Embassy on the "Travel Bubble" plan, and then discuss the next phase with the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Bilateral agreements on the "Travel Bubble" must be finalized by Prime Minister Prayuth and President Xi Jinping. It is expected to be a major step forward for Thailand to be able to come and go freely for many tourists. China has 22 low-risk provinces with a population of 800 million. Therefore, no new positives have been reported for more than 150 days. The visit of many tourists from these provinces with 800 million people to Thailand has a great impact on the resurgence of the ailing Thai tourism industry.
First group of Chinese tourists with Special Tourist Visa completed quarantine
Thailand has banned foreign tourists from entering Thailand due to a pandemic of the coronavirus. After no foreign tourists had entered Kingdom for seven months, the first group of foreign tourists arrived in Bangkok from Shanghaiwith the Special Tourist Visa(STV) newly approved by the Thai government to attract foreign tourists.
This first group has just completed a mandatory 14-day quarantine, and they can be free to travel around Thailand. Some of them have been reported to visit beaches, etc., but their detailed whereabouts have not been disclosed.
These Chinese tourists entered into Bangkok from Shanghai. They had bee quarantined at the Royal Benja Hotel near Sukhumvit Rd near BTS Nana Station. According to hotel executives, they became possible to use the gym and relax around the hotel after passing the first Covid-19 test after the quarantine started. They also celebrated Loy Krathong in the hotel's pool after passing the second Covit-19 test.
Thai govenmentt is planning reopening Maya Bay to tourists in 2021
The Phi Phi Leh island was made famous by the Hollywood movie “The Beach”, but it has been closed since 2018 for rejuvenation.
After the closure of the beach for more than two years, the beach has returned to its real natural state, the island is lush with greenery., and marine life such as crabs has returned to Maya Bay.
According to Natural Resources and Environment Minister Warawut Silpa-Archa, the island will be opened to tourists to rescue the ailing Thai tourism industry, which has been destroyed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
According to a committee of experts, less than 350 people are allowed to visit the island every day. They said that the island will be reopened to tourists next year after confirming the feasibility of reopening.
Thai Police Introduce new Drunk Driver Check System
Thai police said that they will introduce a new drunk driver check system at 10:00p.m. on November 4, 2020 in front of the Bangkok Thong Lo police station while senior police officers observe the demonstration of the new system.
The new drunk driver check system will be carried out by 12 police officers.
The role of each police officer
1. 1 General Manager
2. 2 officers who have selected the drunk drivers to be tested
3. 3 officers who carried out drinking tests
4. 4 officers who arrest escaper
5. 1 officer who guard inspection implementer
6. 1 officer who guard Drunker inspected
In Thailand, traffic accidents caused by drunk driving have resulted in many fatal accidents, and measures such as inspections have been implemented in recent years. This new system is expected to reduce accidents.
Thailand enters the dry season. Temperature drop in the northern and heavy rain in the south are expected.
The rainy season in Thailand has passed and we are on our way to a cool dry season at least in the central and northern regions.
According to the Thai Meteorological Department, q strong high pressure system from China will cover Thailand from Saturday to Monday this week, and temperatures are expected to dropp by 2 to 4 degrees Celsius. It is expected that the weather will be cool in northern Thailand and that the monsoonal trough will bring heavy rain in southern Thailand. the Thai Meteorological Department warned the heavy rains to the people in southern Thailand.
Hong Kong government started talks with 10 countries including Thailand and Japan on "Travel Bubble"
According to Hong Kong’s financial secretary Paul Chan, the discussions on "Travel Bubble" between Hong Kong and other 10 countries including Thailand and Japan are ongoing now.
The travel bubble between Hong Kong and Singapore has already reached agreement and it could take effect within this month(November 2020).
This "Travel Bubble" allows leisure travel to resume without the need for quarantines. Instead, any tourists need to take a coronavirus test before departure and after arrival.
The Tourism industry of Thailand, Japan and Hong Kong have been hit hard by the pandemic this year are all ailing and dying now.
Mr Chan said that Hong Kong is currently discussing on "Travel Bubble" with 10 countries, and the discussions with Thailand and Japan are more advanced than others.
When this travel bubble is established between Thailand, Japan and Hong Kong, there is no doubt that it will greatly contribute to the reinstration of tourism industry in each country. The establishment of the travel bubble is awaited as soon as possible.
Thai Airways will offer international flights to 7 destinations
According to the airline’s chief executive Wiwat Piyawirot, Thai Airways has been reducing roughly both international and domestic fights due to coronavirus travel restrictions, and Thai Airways decided to offeri international flights from and to 7 international destinations over the next 2 months.
Wiwat says "These flights are “semi-commercial”. The return flights are especially for Thais who are returning from overseas, those with families in Thailand, those travelling to Thailand on business, students and travellers with connecting flights.
Departures in November and December
London – Sundays
Frankfurt – Fridays
Copenhagen – Sundays
Hong Kong – Wednesdays (expect November 11 and 25)
Tokyo – Wednesdays and Saturdays
Taipei – Fridays and Wednesdays
Sydney – Sundays (Must inform the Australian Embassy in Thailand)
Please see the details at Thai Airways official website.
Bangkok Airways announced Elite Card
Bangkok Airways, which serves flights throughout Thailand, announced the "Bangkok Airways Elite Card". This Elite Card offers unlimited flight economy class on Bangkok Airways domestic flights from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021.
The Elite Card is priced at 100,000 baht (VAT 7% separately).
"Elite Card" is not only unlimited ride, but also the following benefits are added.
- Automatically upgrade to Bangkok Airways Premier status
- Priority seating
- Priority baggage and priority boarding
- Priority airport waiting list and reservation waiting list
- Premier check-in counter (at available airports)
- Access to the Blue Ribbon Club Lounge, 5 additional discount coupons for the Blue Ribbon Club Lounge worth 4,750 baht
- Additional baggage allowance from 20kg plus 10kg
- Free charge of reservations change (change of travel date, flight change)
- 10% discount on Bagkok Airways Inflight Shopping
- Discounts and benefits for Beyond Flying Privileges partners
"Elite Cards" will be available from November 1, 2020 to November 31, 2020. Seats will be reserved from December 16, 2020 to December 31, 2021. The travel period is from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2021.
For more information, please refer to Bangkok Airways official website.
It would be good if the Thai tourism industry, which is ailing due to the influence of the Covid-19, is activated more.