While people in Thailand’s biggest cities breathed a sigh of relief that the alcohol wasn’t banned in restaurants again Friday, spare a thought for those in 69 provinces where booze is off the menu again.
Starting Sunday, all but eight provinces will be designated “orange” moderate coronavirus-control zones. As part of that, the Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration outlawed alcohol sales in restaurants again. Previously only 39 provinces were designated orange.
Only “blue” tourist pilot zone provinces – and specified districts in orange provinces, such as Chiang Mai – can continue to sell booze, and only until 9 p.m.
The lucky ones are Bangkok, Kanchanaburi, Krabi, Chonburi, Nonthaburi, Pathum Thani, Phangnga, Phuket and certain districts in 18 other provinces.
Visit restaurants in Rayong, Udon Thani, Ubon Ratchathani, or those left orange and you’ll be restricted to Coke… and perhaps some special “coffee”.
In blue zones, the CCSA did up the requirements for booze sales, saying restaruants must be SHA+ certified. Previously, only Chonburi required the “plus” flavor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand’s useless certification. Restaurants also must meet the generally unknown requirements of the “Thai Stop Covid” designation, which has been upgraded to “Thai Stop Covid 2” and now “Thai Stop Covid 2 Plus”.
No one contacted knew what the difference between the seemingly random “2” and “Plus” upgrades were.