Death of the Thai King, Mourning, And impact on the Thai Tourism.

Update: until 14th of November, 2016

The effect of the king’s death can mostly be seen in the cities. Almost all the hotels have a big memorial picture of the king put in front decorated with the black and white clothes and black and white flowers. If you want to visit some of the royal places, you will have to dress up in black and white.

However, on the islands like Koh Phi phi, Koh Lanta, Koh Tao etc. the effect is surely lesser because they are far from the political center.

Shops chain like 7-11 (Seven Eleven) do not serve beer all the time. They follow a particular timing like after 5 PM in the evening only. The most hit area is Bangkok. Also, the sex tourism has been affected. Though hookers will be standing on the road side but dressed in black completely. There was not any kind of striptease dance. The bars were filled with people and hookers but no naked dances.

Thailand Mourning Coverage News:

On 13th of December, The king of Thailand, Bhumibol Adulyadej died and since then the mourning period began. Thai tourism has seen a lot of turns and twists like the closing of bars and pubs, closing of the sex industry, no live concerts, no party, no loud music and a lot more.

Here I am going to explain you the current Thai Tourism update as on 25th October. About 150,000 Thai nationals also gathered outside the Grand Palace in Bangkok to sing the national anthem in the honor of the king.

Despite the announcement, Thai people are forbidden by law to discuss the succession. The Prince will have a formal coronation after the king’s cremation, following a year-long mourning period.



Death of the Thai King & the mourning period:

The first question most people ask is how long is the mourning? The mourning is for one year but the entertainment is banned for 30 days since the death of the king. But you should not dishearten your heart. Since a large share of the GDP growth of Thailand depends on the tourism, the Thai government must do things to retain the tourism because they do not want to get financially crippled. The life must go on.

Status of The Grand Palace, Wat Phra Kao (Temple of the Emerald Buddha):

The grand palace & the Wat Phra Kao will be closed until Nov. 1 because of the royal funeral rituals. So, mango people are not allowed to go inside. You just have to stop at the Golden gates or the main gate of the grand palace.

Besides these places, The Ratchadamnoen Boxing Stadium and Lumpinee Boxing Stadium Ramintra Bangkok will also be closed until Nov 1. In short, games, sports, and public gathering at the moment are not being allowed.


Wat Phra Kao, Bangkok in peak season

Party, Sex industry & fun status in Thailand during Mourning:

Any public gathering is not being recognized except the mourning of the Thai people for the king and gathering in a stadium. So, currently, no bars and pubs are allowing parties in open. That means loud music, open music, live

concerts etc. are not allowed there at the moment. However, Thailand’s notorious red light districts have burst back into life just 10 days after the nation’s king died – with raunchy sex workers paying tribute by wearing skimpy black MAID’S outfits. just over a week after the king died, hundreds of prostitutes lined the streets wearing black mini dresses, maids costumes, black boots, black suspenders and black garters in their own unique mark of respect.

But just more than a week after his death, scores of prostitutes were photographed on the streets in revealing maid’s outfits, black mini dresses and skirts, black boots, and black garters out of respect for the king. More about the current situation of Sex industry can be read here.



Initially, the effect of the mourning could have been seen on the streets. The streets famous for sex workers and prostitutes like Soi Cowboy where sex workers are seen in eye-catching bikinis were seen wearing revealing maid’s outfits, black mini dresses and skirts, black boots and black garters out of respect for the king.

And just a kilometer away on Soi 4 near the city’s infamous Nana Plaza, hundreds of girls and transgender sex workers were standing on the street wearing “respectful” thigh-high black boots and dresses as they rushed to “make up for lost money”.

Although a number of bars and clubs have reopened, but their neon lights are dimmed, music is played uncharacteristically quietly, and revelers may only dance behind closed doors. Police and army patrols are also on hand to make sure venues close at midnight as opposed to 2 am or 3 am.

Also Read: Koh Tao, Thailand Travel Guide: For A Perfect Divers’ Paradise Island Vacation

Thailand Tourism Events and activities:

Although Thai people are in a period of remembrance of His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Thailand welcomes all tourists to the kingdom. It is business as usual with respect and appropriateness. The Department of Fine Arts, Ministry of Culture, would like to invite both Thai and foreign tourists to visit national museums and historical parks throughout Thailand with FREE ADMISSION from now until 31 January 2017.

A number of events and festivals will be going ahead as usual. Some celebrations will be scaled back as a mark of respect for the King. The TAT recommends visitors to check with booking and tour agents as well as monitor the local media and government announcements for updates. For the updated list of events and festivals in Thailand, please visit this source site.

ko phangan beach, shallow, thailand

Deserted beaches of Thailand

Current Thailand Tourism status:

Thailand is trying to minimize the impact of year-long national mourning for the passing away of King Bhumibol Adulyadej on tourism, which contributes directly and indirectly to almost a fifth of their annual GDP. Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) was busy communicating extensively to the tourists about certain restrictions that required to be followed during the period as in the festive holiday lot of Indians make outbound travel.

Major tourists attractions are operating normally except Wat Phra Kaeo (Temple of Emerald Buddha) and the Grand Palace as they will be the venue for royal funeral rites,” TAT India director Isra Stapanaseth said on Saturday. The tourists are also advised to wear respectable attire in public.

Also Read: Thai visa on arrival application form guide for Tourist visa

The tourism department believes though the restrictions are for a brief period, the overall number of tourist inflow will continue to grow. For 2016, Thailand has a target of 33 million international tourists of which India accounts for 1.10 million.

The King passed away on October 13 and the country wants tourists to refrain from boisterous performance and outdoor entertainments at least for a month, till mid-November, before TAT reviews the situation and gives fresh guidelines. Many Indian wedding receptions take place in Thailand and they can continue if held indoor, the TAT India director said. For more details, visit the source site of this news.

How to behave in Thailand during the mourning period:

Here is a summary of the article published on Asiaone.

  • Tourists are expected to behave normally and do not make any hue and cry after getting drunk or disturb the normal civic code. Although no particular code has been issued for the tourists.
  • Dress respectfully as a tourist. Do not try to dress yourself in a provocative dress. Try to look sober not too much bright.
  • Do not expect too much from the nightlife, party and loud events like live concerts and etc. These loud public displays have been banned for the mourning.
  • Do not drink in public. Please go to a bar and stay low.

Also Read: How to fill Thai immigration form? Thai immigration card guide

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About trekkerp

Author of The Girl from the Woods and a Travel writer from India looking forward to collect quirky tales from around the world

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