Thailand’s easing of lockdown measures gave way to the resumption of multiple nightlife bars and clubs on July 1st.
However, once inside the red-light district establishments, the traces of fear left by the coronavirus pandemic lingers on, with its entertainers wearing face masks as well as bikinis.
The government allowed bars, karaokes, and massage parlors to resume their operations on Wednesday, as the country sees 37 days without the local transmission of the virus.
The resumption of operations meant that those working under the nightlife sector can now return to work.
A dancer in the Patpong district said:
“I’m glad that I can come back to work in a job that I’m good at. I’m OK with the mask because it’s one of the precautions.”
All customers entering the red-light district establishments must have their temperature taken, also their name and phone number.
The measures are in place for the easement of contact tracing should an outbreak happen.
Everyone must also practice social distancing once inside.
A British expatriate questioned the policy allowing nightlife shops to operate:
“You can take a BTS (train) in the morning with 200 people on a packed train, but then you can come into a bar and still have to sit 2 meters apart.”
A manager at XXX Lounge, a bar located in Patpong, highlighted the pandemic’s effects on the nightlife culture in Bangkok.
The bar manager from Patpong said:
“There are bars all over Bangkok that have been open for 10 to 15 years, and now they are closed, and they are not coming back.”
On the other hand, Soi Bang La, Phuket’s nightlife district, also resumed their operations.
However, some establishments remain closed, as bar openings should take time.
Patong Mayor Chalermlak Kebsap said:
“Not many operators have resumed their businesses on Soi Bang La because foreign tourists have not arrived yet. They were ordered to close due to Covid-19, and reopening will take time,”
Phuket provincial authorities conducted ocular inspections to the red-light district, as to ensure the establishments are adhering to the standards employed by the government.
The mayor added:
“Operators on Soi Bang La are complying with disease control measures and the Patong municipality urges them to do so strictly.”
Phuket’s Patong beach was a covid-19 hotbed last March.
Schools also resumed across the nation on July 1st.
As for cockfighting and fistfighting venues, they still remain closed.