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Topic of the Week: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?
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  1. #1
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    Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?



    Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand can be confusing for some tourists. Actually, to be honest, it is confusing to me at times. The hours that you can and cannot buy alcohol at your local convenience store or supermarket just don't make sense. In Thailand, you can only buy or be served alcohol between the hours of 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. - midnight. Of course, this being Thailand, your local mom and pop store will probably sell you beer outside of these hours. Though they might refuse if they don€t recognize you. After all, you could be working undercover for the police. The fine for selling alcohol outside of these hours is up to 4,000 Baht and/or up to two years in prison.

    In addition to these licensing hours, there are also 24 hour bans on the sale of alcohol on religious holidays such as Wan Makha Bucha, Wan Wisakha Bucha, Wan Asakha Bucha and Wan Khao Phansa. The fine for selling on these days is up to 10,000 Baht and/or up to six months in prison. But, like I said, alcohol is still being sold. Just this morning, I was buying some eggs at my local mom and pop store when a Tuk Tuk driver pulled up. He was served a shot of alcohol in a small brown bottle. On closer inspection, I could see it was one of those energy drink bottles. So, the next time your driver drinks some Krating Daeng or M-150 to keep himself awake, be aware, it might actually be a shot of whiskey he is drinking.

    What do you think about the licensing hours in Thailand? Do you think they are effective? If not, what should they do to solve the alcohol problem in Thailand?

  2. #2
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    Re: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?

    The selling hours were introduced to protect the school children....even it isn't allowed to sell to young people anyway: No sense
    Which school children are on the way between midnight and say 6AM?

    Buddhist days: In which holy book it is mentioned to put people who don't follow Buddhist teachings into prison?

    I have some understanding to the ban on election day....

    The alcohol problem in Thailand is big but prohibition just doesn't work.....well unless you handle it like Saudi Arabia (a disconnected head can't drink).

    More philosophical approach, who (Thaksin, Yingluck, Abhisit, Prayut, some monk) should decide if I can have a beer now or not. Is right that they decide for me, or should that be my private decision?

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    Re: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?

    It's the 2PM - 5PM window I dislike the most, as I often like to enjoy a cold beer at the hottest time of the day. I'm sure that school-aged kids who want to can easily acquire alcohol and I don't think the current rules help the situation at all.

    The full-day bans for religious holidays don't bother me much, but I did grow up in a US state where "off-sale" alcohol cannot be sold every Sunday (booze at bars and restaurants is still sold). However, tourists are likely to have no idea when these Buddhist holidays occur and be surprised or upset when they can't order a drink.

    I have no good answer to solve alcohol-related problems in Thailand, but laws alone aren't enough. It needs to be far less socially acceptable to drink too much and then drive.

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    Re: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    It's the 2PM - 5PM window I dislike the most, as I often like to enjoy a cold beer at the hottest time of the day. I'm sure that school-aged kids who want to can easily acquire alcohol and I don't think the current rules help the situation at all.

    The full-day bans for religious holidays don't bother me much, but I did grow up in a US state where "off-sale" alcohol cannot be sold every Sunday (booze at bars and restaurants is still sold). However, tourists are likely to have no idea when these Buddhist holidays occur and be surprised or upset when they can't order a drink.

    I have no good answer to solve alcohol-related problems in Thailand, but laws alone aren't enough. It needs to be far less socially acceptable to drink too much and then drive.
    yes the drink and drive is an important point. I think more checkpoints at night would be the solution. If they get someone a week or 2 social work (they do that already) and maybe additional seize the car for the two weeks afterwards. Better than high fees or putting the people into jail.
    The hours are complete useless and the religious holidays are an insult to the other religions.....

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    Re: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?

    I flew into Don Mueang the other day from Mandalay. At just after 3PM I decided to get a can of Singha, purely for informational purposes to be able to post accurately in this thread [***]

    The price was 70 baht, considerably more than the going rate at 7-11, but they were quite happy to serve me at that time, liquor laws notwithstanding. So I enjoyed a nice cold beer before I left the airport.

    *** Actually, I had completely forgotten about the law and wanted to break a 500 baht note, the smallest I had, to take the shuttle for Mo Chit. It was only after I had been drinking it that I realized about the time and the afternoon ban.

    Now this morning about 8AM I cut through Nana on the way for coffee. Unsurprisingly I guess, several people were having morning beers out on the street there, both foreigners and Thais.

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    Re: Alcohol licensing hours in Thailand - Do you Agree?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim View Post
    I flew into Don Mueang the other day from Mandalay. At just after 3PM I decided to get a can of Singha, purely for informational purposes to be able to post accurately in this thread [***]

    The price was 70 baht, considerably more than the going rate at 7-11, but they were quite happy to serve me at that time, liquor laws notwithstanding. So I enjoyed a nice cold beer before I left the airport.

    *** Actually, I had completely forgotten about the law and wanted to break a 500 baht note, the smallest I had, to take the shuttle for Mo Chit. It was only after I had been drinking it that I realized about the time and the afternoon ban.

    Now this morning about 8AM I cut through Nana on the way for coffee. Unsurprisingly I guess, several people were having morning beers out on the street there, both foreigners and Thais.
    I don't know what the law says but usually these times only apply to selling in shops, not serving in restaurants. (Or it is just ignored). 8AM morning beers......that is a bit sick, lol.

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