Thai restaurateurs have proposed lifting a ban on alcohol sales during the daytime so that foreign tourists will spend more and complain less.

Thai restaurateurs have proposed to Prime Minister Settha Thavisin to lift the ban on alcohol sales in the afternoon because visitors to bars and restaurants complain that it is impossible to order alcohol during the day, the Bangkok Post reports.

Thailand, with its rich culture, history and picturesque beaches, attracts millions of foreign tourists every year. However, behind all the outward beauty are unique rules and restrictions, including a law banning the sale of alcohol during daylight hours, which affects the lives of locals and tourists.

Sorathep Rojpotjanaruch, head of the Restaurant Business Club, has sent an open letter to the Thai Prime Minister asking him to lift the ban on alcohol sales during the daytime hours of 2 pm to 5 pm.

According to the letter, the three-hour ban has been in place since 1972 and remains a problem for catering operators as foreign customers often ask for an explanation as to why they cannot order an alcoholic drink in the afternoon.

Indeed, the history of alcohol prohibition in Thailand goes back a long way. In the twentieth century, the country faced serious social problems related to alcohol consumption, and the government decided to impose restrictions. The gradually evolving tradition is enshrined in the Alcohol Control Act passed in 1972. The Act sets the hours during which the sale of alcohol is prohibited.

However, the restriction has become obsolete, writes Sorathhep, and lifting the ban will boost the restaurant sector, economic growth and government campaigns to increase tourism revenue. The restriction on the sale of alcohol was introduced more than five decades ago, rumoured to prevent some government officials from partying and drinking after lunch.

Today, Thailand maintains the tradition of restricting the sale of alcohol at various times of the day. According to the latest changes, the sale of alcohol in Thailand is prohibited between 14:00 and 17:00 and 00:00 to 11:00. These time restrictions apply to all places where alcohol is traditionally sold: shops, bars, restaurants, and other entertainment and drinking establishments.

“Abolish the ban on alcohol sales from 2 pm to 5 pm so that tourists spend more and complain less,” Thai restaurateurs suggest.

The idea of such restrictions is based on the desire to reduce the negative impact of alcohol consumption on society. By restricting access to alcohol during certain hours, the authorities aim to control the level of alcohol consumption and reduce the risk of public order offences.

However, such laws are also controversial and debated. Some people believe that the restrictions are too strict, especially during evening hours when tourists and locals want to enjoy themselves in bars and restaurants. Critics argue that such restrictions affect the tourism industry and inconvenience those who are used to a freer schedule.

The sale of alcohol is allowed in Thailand from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm and from 5:00 pm to 00:00 am

While the pace of life in Thailand tends towards modernity, tradition remains an integral part of the country’s culture. Laws on the sale of alcohol continue to exist within this mix, warning society against the negative effects of alcohol consumption.

Maintaining a balance between tradition and modernity is key to ensuring safety and comfort for everyone under Thailand’s sun.

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