Changing face of Thailand

Welcome to 2018, a new exciting year ahead or just some of the same old?

My home ( I’m mean Thailand ) its my home not where I originate from, its changing and I will fully agree in many circumstances for the better, but in some for the worst. It’s been my home for many years so like all natives I’ve seen changes. Where ever we live there are aspects we like and don’t like… that is life.

However whilst like most foreigners I have no civil rights, and to be fair, I’m not bothered I want a quiet life and be able to live it in peace without twats and idiots spoiling it. I do however wish to have human rights to be left alone to enjoy my life, I don’t want to be persecuted or alienated… just let me live my life quietly and within the rules set by authorities.

I respect a free voice, to say or voice opinions, so like my more famous namesake… “ I might not like what you say, but I will defend your right to say it”. Sadly and it is with great sadness there appears to be a falling back to a xenophobic culture. let me be the first to say I admire Thais for their open love

for their country and its culture, I wish many more people would do the same for their countries.

Sadly… over the past few weeks in the festive period I’ve witnessed a slight turn for the worst in service, attitude and general regard for us foreign guests. Lets say Thailand has been plagued with too many overseas idiots and problem makers, so let’s give a firm round of applause to the authorities in cleaning up some of the undesirables.

The aspect which now appears to be more common or actually never really gone away it the old chestnut of dual pricing. It can be looked at in many ways, but just because I’m a foreigner ( round eye, farang ) call me

what you like … why should I pay more for visiting places of interest, Thai culture, or national parks ? because I earn more?… really.. don’t you know the effort that went into me being able to obtain that?… The cost of university degrees ( let’s say the current younger western generation a burdened with massive educational debts to achieve that) Lets see a Thai pay off $40,000 educational debts before they start out on a working life.

The cost of living overseas and the taxes us foreigners have to pay, let alone the cost of housing, food, transportation,insurance, cars and gasoline just for starters would have 99% of Thais rioting in the streets, just because we can earn more though a quality educational system does not mean we are rich, our disposable income is greatly affected. So lets play a fair game if you want quality tourists, give up this racist dual pricing just because we are foreigners, it really create bad will and word spreads fast on social media …. Oh to these keyboard warriors who say “if you don’t like it leave”… I will not mix my words, you are part of the parasites that hide here and part of the problem foreigners, most Thais do understand these days dual pricing is a social problem which does not look good on Thai people.

Next rant… service… again I’ve seen a marked decline, maybe I notice it more because January is a time, when I have family friends and guests over to stay. Normally I have a varied program and some favourite place to frequent built up on local knowledge and preference, if a place is crap, offers crap, or is not interested in my custom I don’t go back.

When one has visitors, we try and get out of our normal program and visit many new places and take on new experiences… well you want to show your guests the best of what Thailand has to offer. Well I’ve touched on the dual pricing problem which did not go down well with any of the family, friends and guests ( Its a problem Thailand sort it out before it’s to late)…. however lets just add a couple of surprising aspects.

First the ordering of food at many restaurants .Look I like here, understand the possible mix up in language barriers etc, however my Thai is reasonable and my partner is Thai so between us we can order what we want and make it very clear.

Now why do we have this problem that if you order several items  ( 5+) you will get 3 that you wanted, one that you didn’t and 1 that has no resemblance to anything on the menu?…. what that all about. Sure I’m used to it and even though many appear to write down what is wanted most of the time it never happens, think we send stuff back every time.

So why is it so difficult…. is there an underhand agenda? or are staff just to interested in looking at their mobile phones to pay any attention, or really do they not even read or understand Thai themselves?…. well let’s say in the more tourist areas there are less Thai’s working and for low paid foreign (Asian) workers than ever before, so maybe someone is doing really checking on these low cost employees and any crack down on illegal workers is a myth.

Lastly for today, the previous legendary Thai welcome with a smile is decreasing , in some circumstances we have found staff not even showing an interest in looking after customers, they just can’t be bothered, so an important message to owners of establishments that trade with the public, if your staff are ignorant, rude, and show no regard to customers you might have the best product or food in the world at the best prices at the finest venues, but people won’t come, get a bad reputation, and places like Facebook, Trip advisor  many others including all the Thai networks Line etc will destroy your business with bad reports…. and you deserve everyone you get.

Having quality staff is the most important factor in any business.

So let me sign off with a kick in the nuts for one such establishment. Iron Faries Dragonfly at Eastville…. a company who I would say have a great idea in Thong Lor and Eastville, I would have been one of the first to say go enjoy because the experience is incredible…. but not recently. Sadly at Eastville… ( It’s a shopping centre venue) entrance via Fat Guts down the back and via a bookcase in the wall…. ( and been several times before) encountered not just surly staff but a really poor attitude, being declined entrance on a dress code that we made sure we were complying with but made sure we were also turned out in very reasonable manner. Staff were more interested in their phones than actually making us welcome, so we handed them their attitude back with a smile and spent 30,000 baht elsewhere that evening on our meal.

To say it was unimpressive is an understatement… but the punch line… 3 of my guests were reviewers for travel guides and eating establishments… lol if your going to shoot yourself in the foot do it is style  these reviewers who have well over 1 million visitors to their sites a year  show how poor staff can affect your business.

Anyway staff at the new found reserve establishment were great and all earned healthy tips of 1000 baht each, plus personal recommendations’… can’t say I’m keen to give **** **** Eastville another chance until they replace their staff that greet you….

 

Sawadee Pee Mai to you all

About The Author 

Volts: Alien, falang, foreigner, overseas guest in the seach of the lighter side of the Thai lifestyle… might not agree with what you say but will accept your right to say it. Age: Old enough to know better

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