Health authorities Monday afternoon approved the reopening of preschools, museums, massage joints and more in Bangkok and other hard-hit provinces – though nightclubs and bars were unmentioned.
The COVID-19 task force announced at its daily briefing that 10 types of businesses, including cinemas, spas, tattoo shops, indoor gyms and museums in Bangkok and 28 other so-called dark red provinces can reopen this Friday after they were shut for months to curb the spread of COVID-19.
The businesses and activities include:
Pre-school children and young children’s development centers
Museums and historical sites
Learning centers, science and cultural centers, arts center
Indoor sports arenas, indoor fitness centers
Massage parlors, spas
Live music inside restaurants
There were no nightclubs and bars, which were among the first businesses shut and likely the last to be reopened. Without government support, a number of bars and other venues have closed for good.
Apart from the reopenings, the COVID-19 task force also pushed the start of curfew to 10pm until 4am. Department stores, malls and convenience stores can open until 9pm.
The number of daily cases has been sliding since its mid-August peak, and Bangkok once again seems to be turning the page, with people out in large numbers at bars where the sale of alcohol in paper cups is barely concealed.
Although the vaccination rollout has been slow and beset with problems, Thailand has fully vaccinated about 24% of the population. In Bangkok, that is 46.9%.
Health officials today confirmed another 10,288 new COVID-19 infections and 101 deaths.