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Come back Farangs! Tourism in Chiang Mai decimated by Chinese exodus

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Bridges burned; golden geese throttled. All that remains is to apportion the blame, because it couldn't possibly be the fault of anyone Thai...

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Will TAT start up some ad campaign to western countries? "Come back! The Chinese aren't here!"

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Maybe do something about the horrendous traffic and air pollution first? Last time I was in Chiang Mai was in late 2011 and half the cars on the roads were songthaews, especially those red ones, and almost all of them were driving around with just a few passengers or even empty, belching out huge clouds of black diesel fumes. I rode up Doi Suthep a few times on my mountain bike, but had to do that early in the morning (like 7.30 - 8 AM) before the songthaews started going up there as well in large numbers, otherwise I'd suffocate.

I was in Chiang Mai in the winter of 1988-1989 and almost every day the sky was clear and you could see Doi Suthep clear as a bell. In 2011 I couldn't even see Doi Suthep on most days and that was before the burning season, when visibility becomes even worse.

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A lot of the Northern Hemisphere tourists would stay longer in winter if the visa situation was more accommodating.

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The dry-to-ex-rancid smell of a dearth of facts ... okay ... yes, there are no facts here, and, (hallelujah) that's a reason I live here, in fact ... I'll even settle for the fresh-baked smell of clever factoids.

 

Here's a factoid I just made up: the traffic jam I was in going to Airport Plaza yesterday was because of all the people leaving town.

 

~o:37;

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My wife and I were discussing this issue at lunch today, shortly afterwards the lovely Lemon, my wife's Chinese language teacher of two years ago called so wifey put the question to her - by way of background: Lemon is Chinese aged 25 years, she came to Chiang Mai to teach Mandarin for six months before returning home to study for her MBA. she and wifey became close friends and they speak almost weekly.

 

Lemon says there are a number of reasons why the Chinese aren't visiting currently: some are unhappy with Mr Loadsa Watches remarks following the sinking of the boat in Phuket, blaming the Chinese owner went down like a lead balloon and there is resentment which spread quickly. Without prompting she added that currency weakness is an issue, mass-market tours operate on slim margins which have now been eroded to almost nothing hence that sector is hurting. The final point she made was that whilst Thailand is still a prefered destination for many the cleaner air and scenic beauty of the South is prefered by many to the pollution in the North. Those things said she tells that several of her friends from school will visit the North at Xmas/New Year but they have money so exchange rates not so much of an issue.

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10 minutes ago, orang37 said:

The dry-to-ex-rancid smell of a dearth of facts ... okay ... yes, there are no facts here, and, (hallelujah) that's a reason I live here, in fact ... I'll even settle for the fresh-baked smell of clever factoids.

 

Here's a factoid I just made up: the traffic jam I was in going to Airport Plaza yesterday was because of all the people leaving town.

 

~o:37;

Preparation H works well on factoids, or so I'm led to believe.

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4 hours ago, fruitman said:

Yes farang LOVE to sit on concrete stools between loads of chinese ....it's their dream when on holiday 😎...maybe a soidog comes to sniff your leg, maybe annoying salespeople come to interrupt your conversation...it's all exactly what farang like 😂

If a Farang likes to go to Chiang Mai does that mean that the Chinese people should stay away... because you don't like them?

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Air pollution,  dual pricing, ridiculous licencing laws for bars and clubs, unsafe roads, increasing tax on alcohol, Tuk Tuk drivers fighting in the middle of the street with their competition .... 

What do they expect? 

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The Chinese as tourists are overrated. They have a reputation of being very stingy when it comes to buying goods and services. It's only the potential quantity of them that has the Thai authorities salivating.

Chiang Mai doesn't really have all that many attractions. Chiang Rai makes a much better jumping-off point for a number of interesting places.

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4 hours ago, fruitman said:

Yes farang LOVE to sit on concrete stools between loads of chinese ....it's their dream when on holiday 😎...maybe a soidog comes to sniff your leg, maybe annoying salespeople come to interrupt your conversation...it's all exactly what farang like 😂

….yes - while waiting for the farmers start burning their fields....:thumbsup:

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I think all the moaning about Chinese tourists is done by the bar owners massage parlours and bar girls. The Chinese avoid these sort of places. I think the real problem is the decline of sexpats and sex tourists.

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26 minutes ago, cmsally said:

A lot of the Northern Hemisphere tourists would stay longer in winter if the visa situation was more accommodating.

 

yep totally agree with this, long stayers aside there is a huge amount of northern europeans wanting to escape the winter but SETV restrictions (so mum you have to travel to laos then .. then .. to renew lol) and restrictive METVs put a dampener on things for them.

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1 hour ago, Kasset Tak said:

It's like this everywhere outside Bangkok and Pattaya. There are no jobs for the next generation and almost all new factories and other companies opens in Bangkok. So, if it continues like this where already about 1/4 of the Thai population today live and work in the Bangkok Metropolis... then this will become a country where anything outside the biggest cities are nothing more than tourist destinations!
One example is the small city (50,000 registered people) where I live, basically 90% of the population that are between school age and 50+ don't live here, they live and work in Bangkok while the "grandparents" that lives here are raising the children and keeps the local stores and farms running, and those you see here that are between 20-50years old are either working in some form of government job or their spouses are!

Agreed, decentralisation is probably best solution to a lot of Thailand's problems.

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