Although the Thai military overthrew the
government in a bloodless coup, the U.S. State Dept. did not post a
warning and U.S. tour operators report that business is continuing
as usual with no cancellations thus far.
In fact, the 17th
military coup in Thailand since 1932 -- the first since 1991 --
barely seems to have raised an eyebrow.
familiar with coups there," said Bob Drumm, president of General
Tours. "The minute something like that happens, they get the
blessing of the king, and that calms everything down."
Drumm said General
Tours contacted its clients in Thailand and "everything is smooth
-- no difficulty, no cancellations, nothing."
According to Asia
World, General Tours' destination management company in Thailand,
"The situation in Bangkok [on Sept. 20, the day after the coup] is
perfectly normal. All transportation, business and government
functions are operating as usual."
Kent likewise reported no disruptions as a result of the coup.
"There have been changes in government like this before," said
Pamela Lassers, Abercrombie & Kent's director of media
relations, "It's not unusual."
TravelWeekly.com that family members of customers had called
A&K, and the company had given its clients in Thailand an
opportunity to call home, but that so far the coup has had "no
impact on travel in Thailand. So far it looks like everyone has
continued with their itinerary."
According to Dennis
Tan, the executive director of A&K's office in Thailand, "On
the streets of Bangkok, it is business as usual. Public transport,
shops, stores, tourist sites, restaurants, etc., are all open for
business. The airport is operating on a normal flight schedule.
Local [television] channels have resumed normal
In the meantime,
according to Small Luxury Hotels of the World, which operates 20
properties in Thailand, it is "business as usual" in the country
"despite recent political activities." The collection reported that
all facilities and services at its properties are "fully
operational and travelers should feel safe and confident to
continue travel as originally planned."
The Pacific Asia
Travel Association, which has its main headquarters in Bangkok,
maintained that travel and tourism facilities and services were
operating normally throughout the country.
"Even before this
political crisis in Thailand comes to a resolution, we at PATA feel
that it is important to send a clear message to the global travel
industry that, so far at least, the situation here is calm and
non-violent," said President and CEO Peter de Jong, via e-mail to
PATA will update
its Web site, at www.pata.org/crisis, with updated Thailand tourism
information as it becomes available.
Authority of Thailand had not yet prepared a statement at press
contact reporter David Cogswell, send e-mail to [email protected].