The Royal Thai Police in Pattaya and Phuket have launched a 30-day crackdown on crime to improve the image of Thailand pretending to make the tourist areas safe but it looks like Pattaya is targeting foreign tourists that smoke cigarettes.
Instead of targeting muggers, murderers, druggies, and thieves, the Pattaya Police force will be going after foreigners and bar owners instead of the local thugs.
The No Smoking law in Pattaya and throughout Thailand has been in effect for many years, and was even made into law twice, but it has had little effect as it is rarely enforced.
I used to go to Pattaya and see all the No Smoking signs in go-go’s and beer bars and try to step out for a smoke only to be chased down by bar girls thinking I was doing a runner.
There were only a few places where they knew me and I would just point to my cigarettes and head out the door or onto the sidewalk and not have to worry about my beer being taken away and the bar didn’t worry about me not paying my bill. But, these were just a few bars where they knew me.
There are also bars and restaurants I have gone to in Khon Kaen that either have an area within, an area outside, or don’t care about the law. I always ask before lighting up and go by their rules.
I really don’t mind stepping outside onto the sidewalk or an area in the parking lot. I believe in following the law. The problem is the establishments that say it is “OK” to smoke inside that place both me and the bar/restaurant in jeopardy.
The Pattaya Police are making a joke out of this 30-day crackdown if they plan to go after smokers, since most of the folks they will go after are foreign tourists. The Pattaya Police should be rounding up the transvestites on Beach Road and putting them on a one-way bus back home instead of fining them a paltry 100 baht and allowing them right back on the streets.
I have never seen the Pattaya Police or any other Thai cops issue tickets for smoking in a bar or restaurant, but I have seen Thai Police (real or copies) on Sukhumvit Road citing foreign tourists for throwing cigarette butts (real or imagined) on the sidewalk.
I just don’t understand how the Pattaya Police justify targeting cigarette smokers with all the fanfare in Phuket and Pattaya to crackdown on crime. This is an effort to make foreign tourists think they are safe in Thailand but this effort in Pattaya is simply ridiculous.
With all the crimes in Pattaya reported every day, the Pattaya Police should have their hands full with drug users and abusers, muggers, jet-ski and motorcycle rental scammers, tourists being drugged and mugged, and the occasional murder or rape.
But,nope, the Pattaya Police would rather go after foreigners smoking a cigarette in a bar.
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