“Exciting news for nightlife lovers in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chon Buri, and Phuket! 🥂🌃 The Interior Minister has announced that alcohol serving hours at nightspots have been extended until 4am, giving you more time to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere! 🎉🍻 #Nightlife #ExtendedHours #Cheers #VibrantCities #TourismStimulationEfforts”
BangkokNightlife #ChiangMaiNights #ChonBuriPartyScene #PhuketVibes #AlcoholServingHours #TourismEfforts #ForeignTourists #ThaiClubbers
Nightspots to Serve Alcohol Until 4am
Anutin Charnvirakul, the Interior Minister, has recently issued a statement that clarifies the new regulations surrounding the serving hours of alcohol at nightspots. The updated guidelines will allow such establishments in four specific areas to serve alcohol until 4am under their existing licenses. The stipulated areas in question are Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chon Buri, and Phuket.
This stands as a significant update to the previous statement where Mr. Anutin announced an extension of the bar opening hours in these four areas till 4am, but with no extension of alcohol sales times. This had led to a wave of criticisms from nightspot operators, leading to this new clarification.
Entertainment Venues and Hotels
In addition to nightspots, entertainment venues situated inside hotels have also been allowed extended hours, up until 4am. The Department of Provincial Administration is expected to release additional details about this change soon, as stated by Mr. Anutin.
Restaurants’ Alcohol Serving Hours Remain Unchanged
However, the extended hours do not apply to restaurants. Mr. Anutin clarified that restaurants will continue to be allowed to serve alcohol only until midnight.
Response from Business Associations
The initial policy announcement, which extended the opening hours of entertainment venues but did not extend alcohol sales hours, was met with disappointment by many in the sector. Sanga Ruengwattanakul, president of the Khao San Road Businesses Association, was one of the vocal critics. He stated that this policy seemed contradictory to stimulating tourism and would not lead to increased tourist spending.
Mr. Ruengwattanakul also highlighted the difference in drinking behaviors between foreign tourists and Thai clubbers. While Thai clubbers prefer to purchase a bottle of spirits with mixers and consume it until closing time, foreigners often order single drinks one after another. With this in mind, the inability for entertainment venues to serve alcohol during the extended opening hours seemed redundant.
Supporting Mr. Ruengwattanakul’s view, the Thai Restaurant Businesses Association also stressed the impracticality of longer opening hours without extended alcohol sales. They, too, pointed out the variances in the drinking habits of foreigners and Thais.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the new regulations for serving alcohol at nightspots in Thailand?
Anutin Charnvirakul, the Interior Minister, has clarified that establishments in four specific regions – Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Chon Buri, and Phuket, can now serve alcohol until 4am under their existing licenses. This is a significant update to the previous statement where he announced an extension of the bar opening hours in these areas till 4am but without any extension of alcohol sales times.
How has the extension of alcohol serving hours affected entertainment venues in hotels and restaurants?
Entertainment venues situated within hotels have also been granted extended hours, up until 4am. However, the extended hours do not apply to restaurants. Restaurants are allowed to serve alcohol only until midnight as per the current regulations.
What has been the response from the business associations to these changes?
The initial policy announcement was met with disappointment as it extended the opening hours of entertainment venues but did not extend alcohol sales hours. Sanga Ruengwattanakul, president of the Khao San Road Businesses Association, criticized this policy for being contradictory to stimulating tourism. The Thai Restaurant Businesses Association also stressed the impracticality of longer opening hours without extended alcohol sales, pointing out the different drinking habits of foreigners and Thais.