Pattaya noodle soup sellers bubbled with excitement on news they can reopen their restaurants Monday for dine-in service.
The Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration on Saturday reclassified Pattaya as a “red” coronavirus control zone and loosened zone restrictions to allow limited dine-in service, even in “deep red” maximum control zones in Bangkok and three surrounding provinces.
In red zones, restaurants will be allowed to open for dine-in service until 9 p.m. with capacity capped at 25 percent but cannot sell alcohol starting May 17.
Yaowaruk Teepatchsakul, owner of the Song Bandit noodle shop in Naklua, said she is excited to reopen, even with the capacity and hours limits, as her business could not survive only on deliveries.
She said the fact Chonburi is now red, not deep red, may prompt people from the Bangkok metropolitan area to come to Pattaya, which helps her as many of her previous customers were tourists.
Yaowaruk said she will bring out plastic partitions to separate customers again and comply with other virus-control measures.
Kanya Anuruksanut, owner of the Ta Yu noodle shop, said she lost more than half her business during the shutdown. But with the restart of dine-in service, she can keep and pay her employees.
She, too, hoped the rezoning will bring more tourists to Pattaya.