Thailand 2014 Coup: UPDATE
UPDATED: July 4th 2014
Following a ‘soft coup’ on May 22nd, Thailand is presently under military appointed governance. This is the result of political deadlock earlier in the year, necessitating an extreme measure to maintain peace and find a sustainable resolution ahead of future elections. On the ground, in Chiang Mai and elsewhere, very little has changed for the tourists or locals. The situation is quite different from that which news headlines might suggest.
Thailand has a history of coups, the country has become accustomed to continuing with business and daily activities. It remains one of the safest and most peaceful countries in Asia, with some 20 million foreigners visiting in 2013, and similar arrivals throughout June 2014. Any initial measures of martial law have been rescinded with free reporting, communication and movement. Ironically, many have commented that the situation has never been calmer.
What about travel advisories
Rather than take our word for it, you should get other opinions. Your government’s foreign office website can offer advice on travel to Thailand, although it should be noted that they tend to take a prudent line to avoid culpability. Checking travel forums with up-to-date anecdotal information also serves an accurate picture.
A 12-month roadmap towards reform and elections has pacified the international community, similar to the pledge after the 2006 coup in which all parties co-operated in a trouble free outcome. Chiang Mai is quite removed from Bangkok and most people remain unconcerned with politics, worried more about maintaining a safe and enjoyable tourism environment which is part of the city’s livelihood. During the low season (through to November) services like hotels and tours are competitively priced.
Since the initial drama in late May the country has become surprisingly stress-free, most people remain positive about developments according to opinion surveys. It’s actually a good time to be visiting the country. Feel free to ask directly about any further concerns regarding travel insurance etc.