VACCINATION REQUIREMENTS FOR RESTAURANTS – CONFUSION OVER A BAD IDEA

Reports that restaurants may only serve diners able to prove they are vaccinated and that all staff must also be fully vaccinated now appear to have been misleading.

VACCINATION REQUIREMENTS FOR RESTAURANTS – CONFUSION OVER A BAD IDEA

The Bangkok Post (26th August) quoted the Public Health Ministry as stating “plans for reopening, which involve tough Covid-19 protocols including a requirement for diners to show vaccination proof.  Under this scheme, all staff in a restaurant have to be 100% inoculated and all of them have to be tested with rapid antigen test kits every 5-7 days.”

On 28th August the same publication stated “According to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), customers who have been fully vaccinated are classified as green cards”, referring to those who are allowed to dine-in at restaurants from 1st September.

Howls of indignation followed these suggestions with restaurant operators slamming the measures, saying the requirements are impractical and will only serve to increase their financial burdens.

Next came the Royal Gazette, the official publication, with no mention of either vaccination requirement. 

Additionally a Tourism Authority of Thailand news release today (30th August) and the CCSA briefing did not mention vaccination requirements in describing restaurant restrictions.

According to restrictions for dark red zone locations, restaurants, including those inside shopping malls or similar venues, must close at 8 PM with a maximum number of diners in air-conditioned venues being 50% of the capacity and 75% in open-air restaurants.

This has now been followed by reports that Bangkok Governor Asawin Kwanmuang has confirmed that customers WON’T need to show proof of vaccination or ATK test results when restaurants reopen on 1st September.

Of course the Bangkok Governor’s regulations do not apply to provinces outside his jurisdiction, however governors can only increase restrictions. Together with the absence of vaccination requirements in the Royal Gazette, the vaccination-for-customers reports all seems has been just an idea; someone’s very bad idea!

We now await a formal Prachuap Khiri Khan and Phetchaburi governor’s announcement which will hopefully provide some much needed clarity.  Perhaps then we can return to enjoying some of the region’s fine cuisine in-house. 

Dinner will still be alcohol free, but unless the relevant governor deems otherwise (and soon), without any vaccination questions being asked.