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Sunday, December 07, 2008


Congratulations PAD

Thailand is a country that is very popular among Westerners. Generally, Thai people are delightful, the culture is interesting and if you don't mind the heat and a bit of rain the climate is great. If your needs are simple, it is possible to live there on a very small budget. I am just one of many who loves spending time there. Thailand can get as many farang (Westerners) as they like to stay there. We don't need to be enticed. We know the place is great.

Therefore, by the laws of supply and demand Thailand can afford to be choosy about who it allows to stay in the country. It seems to me that the Thai immigration department has been doing this for years, holding up hoops for us to jump through, in an effort to keep the number of farang down a bit. Maybe they won't need to do it anymore.

When the PAD (officially People's Alliance for Democracy but in reality People Against Democracy) closed Suvarnabhumi International Airport they did what Thai immigration has failed to do. They created a situation that many farang might find hard to cope with. We love Thailand but if we can't get in and out of the country, maybe many would rather not be there. Tourism is Thailand's greatest source of foreign income. I heard a report from Koh Samui, an island resort popular with foreigners, that the place is almost empty. Perhaps now Thai immigration will have to be nice to us to entice us to even visit the country.

Then again, maybe there'll now be an influx of tourists to Cambodia, Malaysia, Laos and Vietnam. Why not? They all have much to offer and some of these countries even have immigration rules and employees that make you feel welcome.

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