Alcohol ban for end of Buddhist Lent

PHUKET: A ban on the sale of alcohol will come into effect at midnight tonight as the nation commemorates ‘Wan Org Pansa’, also referred to as the end of Buddhist Lent.

Tuesday 23 October 2018, 04:28PM

The 24-hour ban on the sale of alcohol for tomorrow (Oct 24) will come into effect at midnight tonight.

The 24-hour ban on the sale of alcohol for tomorrow (Oct 24) will come into effect at midnight tonight.

“Tomorrow is an important Buddhist day. By law, the sale of alcohol is not permitted except at duty free shops in international airports until midnight Wednesday (Oct 24),” Col Serpman Sirikong, Deputy Commander of the Phuket Provincial Police, confirmed to The Phuket News.

 “We have received an order prohibiting the sale of alcohol on October 24. The order was sent to all establishments in Phuket that sell alcohol,” he added.

The alcohol ban for tomorrow was instituted by law under an announcement by the Prime Minister’s Office on January 22, 2015.

Under the order, the sale of alcohol is prohibited on five specific Buddhist religious days: Makha Bucha, Visakha Bucha, Asarnha Bucha Day, Khao Pansa and Wan Org Pansa days.

Makha Bucha, Visakha Bucha and Asarnha Bucha Day are all public holidays in the Kingdom.

Khao Pansa and Wan Org Pansa, however, are not.

All government offices will be open.



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Kurt | 26 October 2018 - 09:54:34

@Gerry.  Oh, and yes, in Muslim countries you can eat pork. European Union and Russia export a lot of pork to Muslim Middle East countries and Indonesia.
Russia is even expanding export of it to Indonesia. Once again, no need to play derailing drama cards  " Addiction, Pork, Sharia".

Pauly44 | 25 October 2018 - 18:07:23

Can't drink if they dont sell it, and I've never been to any another country that bans the sale of alcohol for religious reasons, except highly religious muslim states, ADULTS should be able to make their own decisions based on whatever if they choose to drink or not its their choice especially in a major tourist area, if they're religious then they can choose not to, communism, hmmm. 

GerryT81 | 25 October 2018 - 14:38:02

Kurt,i reacted on your comment,no need for me to read/react on other AA's comments.Every country has it laws and they apply to all,tourists included.Why should that been different here? And again,no one tells locals or tourists not to drink,it's only about selling alcohol.And what you calling"drama"was only a simple example,obviously not simple enough for you.Enjoy your'stock...

Kurt | 25 October 2018 - 10:08:22

@ mr Gerry. Read the comment of CaptainJack again. Freedom for these who not like to drink, or like to fast (Ramadan) or like to drink/eat. That are thai religious constitutional freedoms! Don't drama with talks about addiction, pork, sharia, etc.

Rorri_2 | 25 October 2018 - 06:06:27

The mentality of some commenters staggers me, Kurt NEVER said it would be a problem for himself, perhaps some people have a problem understanding. Pauly, 100% correct. Religion should NOT dictate to a state, and a state should not dictate religious belief to its people... not all Thais are Buddhists... Note, this is about THailand.

Pauly44 | 24 October 2018 - 16:53:59

I do believe Phuket is a tourist island, majority of tourists are not Buddhist  nor would be aware of any ban on alcohol sales and visit the island to enjoy themselves, the point Kurt is making is common sense would suggest authorities recognize this and allow alcohol to be sold in designated tourist areas for tourists, that would make sense, probably not! 

Christy Sweet | 24 October 2018 - 14:49:54

Patriarchal religions are so authoritarian, constantly bleating, "Don't do this, don't do that.." 
"Baa, baaaa" say the sheeple happy to sign on if they can never die- or whatever it is they are lied to about.  I agree, those addicted to fantasies should keep their  weirdo  laws to themselves.

GerryT81 | 24 October 2018 - 13:00:09

Kurt,it's about a ban of selling alcohol.No one hampers you to satisfy your addictions in private.And talking about dictate.Do you think in a Muslim country they should serve you pork just because you are a non muslim ? Or would you like to see in your country that muslims live by sharia law and  execute it too? And no, you will not get my respect,as long as you don't show any respect.

Kurt | 24 October 2018 - 11:07:44

@GeryT81.  Such days are not inconvenient for me. I don't go bars, +going out by car ( lack of public transport) not drink. I respect religious thinking/doings what are not mine. May I as agnost also get respect in return?
To dictate non buddhist to follow in a religious ban has nothing to do with respect. Far from that. It is quite 'one side' thinking, except on thai airport

GerryT81 | 24 October 2018 - 09:47:25

As a tourist i never had any problems with those days,nor had friends of mine. Playing the tourist card is only done to distract from your own inconvenience.And this is the problem with your attitude in general.Your lack of respect ! Ask yourself before you start your rant,  if you did anything good for Thailand or if there is anything you will be remembered for after you are gone.

DeKaaskopp | 24 October 2018 - 09:14:29

So,because one is not a Buddhist,this law should not apply to him.Great argumentation.It shows ones selfishness and his disrespect for a nation whose majority are Buddhists. Calling Phuket/Thailand a non quality holiday destination because of  a one day alcohol selling ban is ridiculous. At least we know now what one needs to consume daily.Poor soul!

Jor12 | 24 October 2018 - 00:35:50

If you don't like it, simple, leave. It's not your country nor do you have any idea of its customs and traditions. Go live elsewhere. No one wants to hear stupid comments.

CaptainJack69 | 23 October 2018 - 23:24:02

Yeah, respect for other peoples cultures not withstanding and everything, this is the 21st century and the separation of church and state should be an inalienable right for everyone. Fun fact, in Thailand the constitution guarantees religious freedom to everyone except the king, who is required to be Buddhist. So how can there be laws based on (Buddist) religion?

Pascale | 23 October 2018 - 21:59:00

Most tourists can survive one day without alcohol.The drunkards among them can stock  up beer,wines etc. after this warning.One expat is giving a good example as shown on here.Most tourists are not shocked,they easily respect it. Expats who think that freedom in Thailand is very limited because they can't buy daily their much needed quantum of alcohol  are pitiful.

Kurt | 23 October 2018 - 17:08:14

Thank you for the warning.  Today got my stock of beer, wines, etc.  I am not buddhist. Freedom in Thailand these days very limited. For us, living here, ok, we are prepared,  for tourists shocking + tomorrow no water supply in Patong and Karon either. What a lovely non quality holiday destination, with these sudden inconvenience confrontations.  Phuket? Once, and never again, the tourist thinks.

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