Jomtien beach vendors suffering from Covid- 19 pandemic due to lack of domestic tourism

Jomtien –

Jomtien beach vendors have spoken with The Pattaya News team this weekend as part of our series of showing how the latest round of closures, measures, and other regulations are affecting local business owners in the Pattaya area, including those who are allowed to operate like food vendors.

The Pattaya News visited Jomtien beach vendors yesterday afternoon at sunset, finding that the beach was much quieter than it had been in previous months when scores of domestic tourists visited from Bangkok and other Eastern provinces. Due to current measures to control the Covid-19 virus the province of Chonburi is considered a highly controlled province and coming and going is restricted between provinces. To do so requires permission from district officials in the form of registration. (January 10th)

Mrs. Goy, a somtam vendor, told The Pattaya News, “Before the Covid – 19 pandemic, I earned 2,000 baht to 3,000 baht per day in revenue. Weekends were jam-packed with domestic tourists as well as local residents coming from districts more inland to see the beach.”

“However, during the current situation due to travel restrictions and fear of getting the virus from many residents that stop them from coming out I earn less than 1,000 baht per day. Somedays, I have to dump food that is leftover.” Mrs. Goy continued.

“If I give up, I don’t know what to do to earn for my living. I hope that one day Pattaya will be back to normal and for now I have to simply keep on doing what I do. I work fourteen hour days or more currently just trying to make a living to take care of my family as the Government has not provided any official measures or aid yet for those who work informally, like myself.”

Mr. Khwan who is a fruit vendor, told The Pattaya News, “I have only sold less than half of what I have each day. Fruit that I have left I have to throw away which further erodes my profits. Tourists are nearly all gone now, domestic and foreign. I depend on mostly Jomtien residents, some foreign and some Thai, who come to the beach to exercise or relax nearly daily.”

“I still have to sell fruit even though I do not earn enough currently for my basic expenses because I do not have any other job. I don’t have college degrees or requirements many other jobs need and therefore work informally, without government aid or social security. I am worried that if the government decides to close beaches like last year then I will have no income at all.” Mr. Khwan continued.

Concern over the beaches possibly being closed was high among vendors on Jomtien Beach. The Chonburi Governor, however, has said he has no plans at this time to do so as he understands the severe impact on the many informal and low paid workers that depend on the beaches to make a living. Instead, law enforcement is focused on enforcing no alcohol rules on the beach and stopping large gatherings to encourage social distancing.

Banglamung/Pattaya, which includes Jomtien, recorded zero cases of Covid-19 yesterday. The province remains a deep red (highly controlled) zone, however, due to a large cluster of infections in Si Racha in the North.  The area has been under strict measures and restrictions since December 30th, 2020 now. Although many businesses are allowed to legally be open the overall situation, especially travel restrictions on an area usually popular with domestic tourists, have caused major problems for nearly every business sector, not just the highly publicized nightlife which is why we here at The Pattaya News continue to highlight the impact on every industry.

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