In this week’s issue of Travel Courier, Ian Stalker reports that after last week’s military coup in Thailand – aimed at quelling more than half a year of political unrest in the hugely popular Asian country – tour operators offering the destination are hoping that things will quickly return to normal without any flare-ups of violence.
The military imposed martial law May 20 and then shortly after seized power, saying it wanted to restore order to a country that has seen anti-government unrest occur in such prime tourist locales as Bangkok. Among coup measures was a curfew.
“It’s wait and see,” Lorna Gaweco, national tour manager at Jade Tours, says of how the coup will affect Thai tourism.
Gaweco said an absence of violence will be “key” to tourists deciding whether to visit the country, although the curfew imposed from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. will be a disappointment to those visiting the Thai capital as “Bangkok is all about nightlife.”
She’s hoping for a quick lifting of the curfew.
Jade has been receiving continuous updates since the coup and the country is reportedly calm, she says.
The tour operator has only had one call from someone concerned about the situation and that person is slated to leave in June. Those planning on visiting farther down the road apparently expect things to be resolved by their departure dates, Gaweco adds.
Trish Sare of BikeHike Adventures predicts the situation will have a temporary and negative effect on Thailand’s tourist trade.
But she adds that “tourists will quickly forget because Thailand is such a popular tourist destination and will continue to be so. Overall, Thailand is regarded as a safe destination and travel advisories have not changed much from previous months.”
For the full story in this week’s issue of Travel Courier, click here.