Phuket hotels shut down again
Hotels in Phuket as well as Pattaya are closing down again due to another COVID-19 surge in Thailand.
- A third wave of COVID-19 infections is coursing through Thailand.
- It is expected that with this shut down, hotel occupancy rates will remain in the single digits through May.
- The only hope for tourists and hotels is a coronavirus vaccine the achieves herd immunity – 70 percent of the population being immunized.
Thai Hotels Association (THA) President Marisa Sukosol Nonpakdee said on April 23 that the latest coronavirus outbreak has affected not only room rentals, but hotel restaurants and conference centers. Only hotels with strong financial foundations or those getting financial support from parent companies will be able to survive, she said.
Hotel operators had expected to parlay a relatively strong Songkran into a solid May and limp into the fall when foreign tourism is expected to resume. But the third wave has wiped out any chance to make money this spring, Marisa said.
Fewer than half the hotels in tourist destinations nationwide are open for business with many of those considering closing until October. Marisa said that will only fuel the tourism sector’s unemployment crisis. Currently, 45 percent of hotel employees are jobless, reported the Bank of Thailand.