In a move which is intended to help tourism, the military has relaxed the curfew. The curfew now runs from from midnight to 4 a.m. (It was 10pm to 6am). Markets, shops, petrol stations and bars will now be able to stay open longer.
This follows a fall in tourism numbers of 20 per cent since martial law was imposed just over a week ago. Nine per cent of Thailand‘s GDP is tourism related. There has also been a drop in consumer spending by Thais.
Outside Bangkok, tourists and locals are reporting little difference to day to day life and holiday plans. In Bangkok, there is the visible sight of military and there have been protests against the coup. Authorities from around the world continue to urge their nationals exercise caution and to be aware that things can escalate. Media and locals are reporting that attractions, bars, markets and shops are open and life is relatively “normal”. Taylor Swift, however has cancelled a sold-out concert in Thailand, which was scheduled for June 9.
There are reports that Facebook was blocked for a few hours. It seems unclear of it was a glitch or at the orders of one of the Ministries or of the military.
Finally, I was bemused that Canada’s largest selling newspaper “metro” announced that a coup had taken place in Taiwan. An embarrassing but common mistake which the Taiwanese government, of course, sought to rectify.