A very interesting turn of events in Krabi - whilst more tourists is not necessarily a good thing its interesting that a group of Thais are protesting the price difference - I never expected that to ever happen.......................
Chief of park cannot confirm the fee to the park Because of the Regulation Officials are preparing to cope after the boat owners threaten mass protest
"KRABI: -- The chief of the national parks in Krabi has refused to bow to pressure from boat operators to halve entrance fees for foreign tourists.
He said that the fees are set by the ministry and can't be changed.
Now long tail and speedboat operators are threatening to blockade the park HQ in Krabi town as well as park entrances to demand action today.
Police and soldiers have been put on alert for trouble.
The decision not to change the fees came after pressure earlier this month from Ao Nang, Krabi operators. They said that charging tourists ten times the Thai rate was too much and had seen their trade threatened as tourists decided enough was enough and refused to go to the parks and be fleeced.
Adult non-Thai tourists pay 400 baht and children 200 while Thais pay 40 and 20 for children.
The operators wanted to see the fees halved to try to attract the lost tourists. They said their business was 60% down.
Many tourist attractions in Thailand practice "double pricing" but the reality is the fees demanded are often much more than double.
But far from giving in to the demands local park chief Sarayuth Tanthian ordered that his officers get tough with anyone not paying the full whack for tourists in their boats.
He ordered that any operators defying his demands should be reported and action would be taken later.
Thairath reported that one boat laden with tourists had refused to pay ten times the Thai rate for foreigners on their vessel yesterday.
Others reluctantly followed the regulations.
Meanwhile the boat operators have threatened action today, Wednesday, with planned protests and blockades of the park offices in Krabi town and entrances to national marine parks.
Chief Sarayuth said that police and military personnel were on alert for trouble though he said that the authorities will act within the law. "