Thai tourist areas greet lifting of curfew

Thai tourist areas greet lifting of curfew

Hoteliers in Hua Hin and Cha-am welcomed the lifting of the curfew in tourist areas, saying it will boost income for hotels and resorts plus people running restaurants, shops and entertainment venues.

The Western Region Hotel Association, which covers operators in the two areas, said lifting the curfew would boost businesses, particularly on weekends. Group tours for seminars were also returning to their areas as a result of the move by the National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO).

The ruling junta, on Friday night, announced the lifting of curfew in Phetchburi's Cha-am district, Prachuap Khiri Khan's Hua Hin district, Krabi and Phang-nga provinces, effective immediately.

Also, the Tourism Authority (TAT) said on its website that the NCPO had granted curfew exemption for the full-moon parties on Koh Pha-ngan being held from tomorrow till Friday.

The island of Pha-ngan, off Surat Thani in the Gulf of Thailand near Koh Samui, draws thousands of backpackers to its hedonistic full-moon event, billed as one of the biggest beach parties in the world.

The curfew was earlier lifted in most major beach resorts, including Pattaya in Chon Buri, Koh Samui in Surat Thani, and Phuket.

Vasant Kittikul, president of the Western Region Hotel Association, said both Hua Hin and Cha-am were not hit hard by the curfew as they are top destinations, but it was a relief for businesses that stay open late at night. The night market and Hua Hin walking street would see a boost.

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