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Vietnam citizens recommended to limit travel to turmoil-hit Thailand

It is recommended that Vietnamese citizens limit travel, if possible, to Thailand at this time and wait until the situation there returns to normal following a military coup last week, the Consular Department said over the weekend.

The Vietnamese community in Thailand, meanwhile, should strictly follow local regulations and contact Vietnamese representative agencies in time if they need supports, the department under Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a warning issued on Saturday.

Vietnam citizens recommended to limit travel to turmoil-hit Thailand
Vietnam citizens recommended to limit travel to turmoil-hit Thailand

In case of emergency, Vietnamese citizens can contact the Vietnamese Embassy in Thailand via the 24/7 hotlines of +66.8989.66653 / +66.8524.65078. People who have relatives in Thailand can also contact the Consular Department at +84918370497 for immediate supports.

The recommendation came after Thailand’s army chief, General Prayuth Chan-ocha, seized power in a bloodless coup in a bid to end six months of turmoil in Thailand on May 22.

Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs Spokesman Le Hai Binh said on Saturday that as a regional neighbor and ASEAN member, Vietnam “is watching the developments in Thailand with keen attention.”

“Vietnam hopes Thailand will stabilize its situation soon to construct and develop the country, for peace, stability and cooperation in the region.”

Following the recommendation from the Consular Department, Vietnamese tour organizers have also begun to take action.

Vietravel announced on Sunday that it will cancel all Thailand packages with departure time from now to the end of May.

“The situation in Thailand is getting complicated and unpredictable, which worries tourists,” company CEO Nguyen Quoc Ky said.

Tourists who already paid for their tours can choose to either get a refund or change their departure time. Customers who do not wish to travel to Thailand anymore can also choose to switch into other domestic and outbound packages, Ky added.

Vietravel usually receives up to 60 customers buying tours to Thailand on a daily basis, according to the company.

Also on Saturday, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism issued an announcement, requesting that local travel agencies not bring Vietnamese tourists to locations where there are conflicts and protests in Thailand.

Tour organizers must ensure safety for tourists and closely watch the situation there, the VNAT said.

Certain travel firms including Ben Thanh Tourist, Fiditour, and Saigontourist told Tuoi Tre on Sunday that they will abide by the VNAT request.