Grapevine: Foreigners last – June 18, 2021


Expectant farang
The last time we looked, the thailandintervac site was working part-time and most Pattaya expats (who wanted to) have registered. Nobody knows when invitations to receive the first jab will be emailed to the expectant ones. Probably late July or early August, starting with the oldest guys and gals first.

Pattaya Sandbox
Many questions around the issue of Pattaya accepting full vaccinated international tourists without quarantine from October 1. Will the bars be open? What documents will you need to board a plane? Will you be able to stay in a private home rather than a government-registered hotel? What kind of tracking app, if any, will you need to wear? Answers on a postcard please.

Fast meters
No problem, if your electric meter is running slow, but a fast one is a different matter. The provincial electricity authority says it can only investigate complaints if the current bill is paid. So it’s refunds later. Some users say that they are still receiving a discount, others that they are being charged extra. Another case of TIT (This is Thailand).

Value of the baht
It looks like the baht has stopped falling against major currencies such as the US dollar, the euro and the pound. Speculators say that there is confidence now that the Thai vaccination rollout is happening on schedule. More or less anyway. The next danger is that the virus variants will get out of hand in Thailand. So to speak.

Still offering 30 percent
At a recent visit to Ali Baba, a top Indian restaurant in Pattaya by any definition, Grapevine readers were delighted to see that the huge discount on bills is still operational. We don’t know of any other restaurant IN Pattaya, Indian or otherwise, which is offering such good value for money. Take a trip.

The price of Piccalilli
The most popular brand amongst expats here is Hayward’s: tangy and chunky as it should be. You can find it in several traditional supermarkets as well as at least four of those stores specializing in farang tastes. For the same-sized jar the retail price varies between 139 baht all the way up to 260 baht. It really pays to shop around these days.

Fish and chips day
It was recently international fish and chips day, although the Brits love them best. Grapevine stalwarts tried the dish at several locations all over town. In their opinion the best are to be found at The Caddy Shack. It’s a question of knowing all about beer batter according to the experts. And avoiding those frozen oven chips. Always very pleasant service at this restaurant.

Last bookshop in town
Although Soi Chaiyapoon is mostly shuttered bars and clubs these days, it does house Canterbury Tales, the last of the major second-hand book stores in Pattaya. It’s also a popular hangout for retirees wanting to pass the afternoon with a cup of tea. There’s a good selection of reading material, admittedly a bit of a jumble. Great place. Mosey on over.

Massage parlors doomed
Representatives of the massage businesses in Pattaya say that hundreds of them have closed permanently, leaving only about 100 still closed but awaiting opening any day now. To be fair, many of the closed ones had put up the shutters even before the Covid-19 pandemic got into its swing. It all depends when and if the tourists return.

Moderna in October
If you are looking for an alternative vaccine, the Private Hospital Association is promising two doses at a total cost of 3,800 baht which covers administration and insurance in case of side effects. The price has been set nationally. Apparently, the starting date will be in October and it’s too early to start booking now. Never try to hurry the Orient.