As malls across Bangkok and Thailand reopened for the first time in weeks following an easing of lockdown restrictions as part of the second phase of relaxing rules, authorities warned that an evaluation will take place within three days.
Queues began forming outside of some of Bangkok’s most popular malls early this morning as shoppers were eager to access the facilities that had been closed during lockdown restrictions over the past few weeks.
Mall staff encouraged social distancing by placing stickers outside of the shopping centers, keeping the queuers between one to one-and-a-half meters apart.
Upon reaching the entrance, shoppers were scanned with a temperature gun, offered alcohol gel, and asked to check-in via the “ThaiChana” application by scanning a QR code and registering their phone number.
All shoppers were told they must wear a face mask while inside the mall and respect social distancing measures while browsing, sitting, and walking.
While initial reports provided feedback that the measures in place were being observed and working well, there remains some concern among officials that larger shopping malls may have difficulty in managing huge numbers of shoppers.
For instance, Seacon Square in Bangkok could accommodate 40,000 people with space for five square meters per person. However, it will be very hard to staff to monitor such a large number of people at all times.
As the process remains in its infancy, officials in Bangkok will access the situation in three days to see what can be improved and how to scale the opening of malls efficiently.
For now, people are advised to closely follow the procedures already in place while shopping at malls and to be particularly watchful if bringing young children shopping.