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Chinese invasion in Bangkok’s Airports


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Long hours of waiting for tourists to pass the Immigration Authority in Bangkok’s Airports

Chinese tourists have been arriving in huge groups into Thailand, and the Chinese tourism has been immensely and continuously increasing in the last few years. In 2016, statistics say that the number of Chinese visitors to Thailand have exceeded 32 million, and in 2017 it is expected to increase even more, since in the first quarter of the year Thailand has already received more than 9 million Chinese tourists.

The Thai Immigration authority seems to be totally overwhelmed by these massive groups arriving into Bangkok’s airports causing incredible crowding in the immigration authority’s areas. In the past, the maximum waiting time to pass the immigration authority in Bangkok’s airports used to vary between 10 and 20 minutes. But nowadays and because of the arrival of hundreds of thousands of Chinese tourists, the waiting time by the immigration has increased into unbearable hours which is totally unfair on tourists from other nationalities having to wait so long in order to get their passports stamped.

For western tourists or other nationalities entering Thailand, it delivers a proper negative first impression having to wait so long for the stamp, especially after landing exhausted from long hours’ flights that in some cases exceed 12 hours of flying.

I suggest that the Thai immigration authority should start making separate counters in the airports for Chinese nationals to ease such crowding and to deliver a better, quicker and more fair service for tourists and visitors of Thailand from different nationalities.

 

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In 2016, statistics say that the number of Chinese visitors to Thailand have exceeded 32 million,

 

Given the total number of tourists entering Thailand in 2016 was 32 million I think you'll find that all 32m of them didn't hail from the Middle Kingdom.

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In 2014, 4.6 million Chinese visitors travelled to Thailand. In 2015, Chinese tourists numbered 7.9 million or 27 percent of all international tourist arrivals, 29.8 million;8.75 million Chinese tourists visited Thailand in 2016

 

 

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If arriving at Suvarnabhumi, it is good to be aware that there are two immigration areas. Usually, if one is bursting to the gills with many planeloads of recently arrived passengers, it is worth following the signs to the other immigration area, less than a five minute walk away. In my experience, it is very rare for both immigration areas to be swamped simultaneously.

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It's easy to jump to conclusions and blame the Chinese. I saw a tour group of about 10 -15 people sat on the floor outside a Family Mart on the departure level. Young and old, guide, tour stickers on shirts etc. Eating instant noodles and having an airport picnic. Many people will say they don't spend any money , cheapest possible tour , cheap Chinese tourists blah blah blah. Only when I could see that the tour operators sticker was written in Vietnamese did I realise these tourists were not Chinese nationals.

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When my wife and I travel, I always go with her to Thai Immigration. Normally, there is No Line and the Immigration

Officers are always happy to look over my American Passport and stamp uickly so we are not held up. Of course, I

always have Non_o Visa ready to go or re-entry visa. Very pleasant experience.

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The Chinese seem to have a pack mentality, many of them are not from the big cities, hence staying close together on an overseas visit is understandable,  it would also appear that the visas held by the tour groups differ, most seem to have tourist visas issued in China whilst the others opt for the visa on arrival.

however nearly all seem to suffer the same issues, and that is their inability to read and write English and I have lost count after lining up for ages at immigration the number of times huge Chinese tour groups in front get to the immigration office with their immigration cards not filled in.

surely the immigration dept could have cards in Chinese, but again would the Chinese be permitted to fill in their firms in Chinese ? Or in a language they have no idea about.

I live in China, and have often wondered what I would do if they insisted that their immigration forms must be written in Chinese. 

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Jailai after posting my last effort, I looked up BFS on line and read about them. I suffered a mini stroke a few months ago and am now very unsteady on me feet, hence the long walk from the gate to immigration is a nightmare. Unlike HK, Swampy seems to be devoid of electric carts, so BFS would be a godsend for me.

but how to book ?

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2 hours ago, DipStick said:

Jailai after posting my last effort, I looked up BFS on line and read about them. I suffered a mini stroke a few months ago and am now very unsteady on me feet, hence the long walk from the gate to immigration is a nightmare. Unlike HK, Swampy seems to be devoid of electric carts, so BFS would be a godsend for me.

but how to book ?

You book on the BFS website, https://www.bfsasia.com/Premiumservice/customer/booking_select_service.php, arrival service with cart THB1600.

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While I sympathize with you, I am 70 years of age and always travel with a wheelchair.

That usually gets me pushed by the wheelchair attendant through the priority area in immigration ahead of others.

I am pushed through immigration, the baggage collection area, change my money to get Thai Baht for foreign currency at a Bank stop, and on to a taxi queue all in my wheelchair.

Anyone who thinks that is a benefit, I will gladly exchange it with him  for the chance to be 30 years old again, and not 71 years  and the chance to have  a healthy young mans  legs again.

So when you are waiting in lines, and you see me going past you in my wheelchair, think quite carefully about which you would really prefer.

I have been 30 and healthy before and I can't go back there again.

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On 5/14/2017 at 2:11 PM, lordblackader said:

 

Given the total number of tourists entering Thailand in 2016 was 32 million I think you'll find that all 32m of them didn't hail from the Middle Kingdom.

Perhaps but there are at least 27 million in Huay Khwang right now.

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The Chinese seem to have a pack mentality, many of them are not from the big cities, hence staying close together on an overseas visit is understandable,  it would also appear that the visas held by the tour groups differ, most seem to have tourist visas issued in China whilst the others opt for the visa on arrival.
however nearly all seem to suffer the same issues, and that is their inability to read and write English and I have lost count after lining up for ages at immigration the number of times huge Chinese tour groups in front get to the immigration office with their immigration cards not filled in.
surely the immigration dept could have cards in Chinese, but again would the Chinese be permitted to fill in their firms in Chinese ? Or in a language they have no idea about.
I live in China, and have often wondered what I would do if they insisted that their immigration forms must be written in Chinese. 


Good point. Everything else is in dual Chinese / English, the on board tourism video, signs at the airport and all the shops... They can easily have the landing card with chinese under the English and Thai. They do this in philippines and other asia countries already. And having them write in Chinese is no issue since they do nothing with the landing cards anyway, maybe they are scanned in in bulk later on but all I see the officer doing is tear the card off and put in a pile so it doesn't matter what gobbledygook you write in it. The chinese grandma or grandad from the villages who's got a thailand tour as a present from their kids will not know a word of English. It would be like complaining that your Isaan parents of your wife or gf do not know any English.

The other point about the chinese not spending anything is why the f would they? I go back to hk and china all the time on business and I would definitely not buy anything here! It's all from china anyway and much cheaper there so it makes absolutely no sense to buy anything here. In china you can get 6 pairs of socks for 10rmb...50 thb. Here they sell you one pair for 30 thb. It's a rip off.

Sent from my LG-H990 using Thailand Forum - Thaivisa mobile app

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On 5/15/2017 at 5:00 PM, reenatinnakor said:

...

The other point about the chinese not spending anything is why the f would they? I go back to hk and china all the time on business and I would definitely not buy anything here! It's all from china anyway and much cheaper there so it makes absolutely no sense to buy anything here. In china you can get 6 pairs of socks for 10rmb...50 thb. Here they sell you one pair for 30 thb. It's a rip off.

I am sure the prices there are cheaper, but it is not true that "it's all from China."  One of the things I like about Thailand, which reminds me of being a kid in the USA (long ago) is the "Made In Thailand" stickers on most of the items sold here.  While there are Chinese items available, the tariffs on the Chinese products seems to keep them about the same price as the locally-made comparable item. 

 

This is "As It Should Be" in any country that wants to continue to be self-sufficient and not have a massive trade-deficit sucking out its capital-lifeblood.  If only more nations - especially those with the highest consumer spending levels - would follow Thailand's lead, we could put an end to this "race to the bottom" globalist-economy. 

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While I understand the appeal of BFS and similar services for people with limited mobility, people unfamiliar with BKK, and people who don't check bags, in around 25 international arrivals over 6 years, I can only think of one or two times that Immigration was slower than the baggage people.  

 

So getting through immigration faster buys me very little when it just means I wait longer for my bags to hit the carousel.  And for 900-2500 baht that I've seen advertised on different websites, that's not a great value.

 

Or am I missing something else? (Not having to stand in line with the silly brown or rude yellow people doesn't count.)

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14 minutes ago, impulse said:

While I understand the appeal of BFS and similar services for people with limited mobility, people unfamiliar with BKK, and people who don't check bags, in around 25 international arrivals over 6 years, I can only think of one or two times that Immigration was slower than the baggage people.  

 

So getting through immigration faster buys me very little when it just means I wait longer for my bags to hit the carousel.  And for 900-2500 baht that I've seen advertised on different websites, that's not a great value.

 

Or am I missing something else? (Not having to stand in line with the silly brown or rude yellow people doesn't count.)

 

true for almost every flight i've ever taken, i'd say the longest i've ever had to queue anywhere for immigration is 30 - 40 minutes. though one benefit of getting through immigration quickly is you can sit often down in the baggage waiting area as opposed to standing in an immigration queue.

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If you are old or of limited mobility you don't need to pay anything to be pushed in  a wheelchair or buggy to the aircraft. The airline provides and organises this service for free. You do have to tell them your requirements when you book though. It will start at check-in and finish at the arrival hall. 

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On 5/17/2017 at 10:33 PM, CNXBKKMAN said:

If you are old or of limited mobility you don't need to pay anything to be pushed in  a wheelchair or buggy to the aircraft. The airline provides and organises this service for free. You do have to tell them your requirements when you book though. It will start at check-in and finish at the arrival hall. 

Some airlines provide wheelchair assistance for free, but others (especially low cost airlines) levy a service charge.

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