Somehow I Really Don’t Think a Government-Sponsored Cocktail is Really the Answer

The world economy is in a tailspin, travel is down all over, and in Thailand in particular after the Suvarnabhumi airport shutdown from end-November. But if the govenrment of Thailand can only develop a new alcoholic drink, sure, that will solve everything.

Cuba’s got the Mojito. There’s the Singapore Sling and the Manhattan. Thailand hopes a newly created drink called “Siam Sunrays” will enter the world’s cocktail lexicon and help draw tourists back to the country.

The Tourism Authority of Thailand unveiled the drink Thursday, calling it “Thailand in a glass — the new punch in Thai tourism.”

The cocktail consists of a shot of vodka, coconut liqueur, a dash of chili pepper and sugar, lime juice, a few slivers of lemongrass and ginger — shaken not stirred, then strained into a glass — with ice and soda water.

It’s the latest strategy to revive Thailand’s key tourism industry, which was battered by political protests last year that culminated in a weeklong shutdown of Bangkok’s two main airports.

Though I suppose, if monetary policy hasn’t done the trick… and it’s at least as likely to help as a stimulus package

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. This used to be a blog about *travel*. Are you going to let it deteriorate into a political cheap-shots website? Your ‘dumb snide notes about politics when it was not called for’ total is at 2 posts and counting,..

    It is going to take 15+ years for the US to recover from this train-wreck economy, just like in Japan (bad banks, crazy real-estate bubble, stock market bubble etc) – sound familiar?

    Whether the current economic policies are going to work, or work quickly, is difficult to tell now. Whether they are beter than the ones put in place last year – or even the last 10+ years as the bubble came up – is equally hard to tell. Whether you agree with any of these policies or not, is up to you.

    But if you choose to swerve the direction of your blog to politics, then you change the focus and relevance of your blog.

    You are about to lose readers – as is one other blogger who posted first a political flame rant, followed by a pretty lame retraction.

    I would advise you post, for the public, a position on whether you are going to focus on travel and withdraw from unnecessary political statements. You may yet retain people who are being turned off by your rants.

  2. @NYCguesser

    Not sure if Gary completely flushed this point out in his post, but Thailand has a great tradition of inaction during times of distress.

    Perhaps in the eyes of the Thai government tourism officials, a “Siam Sunray” is an appropriate response for appropriate for a country that experienced a 19.4% decline in Thailand tourist arrivals in the fourth quarter and saw GDP contract 4.3% in the fourth quarter vs the previous year.

    Just as Gary writes about his view on CX vs SQ F service, he is welcome to “swerve” to discuss his view on politics, especially for a country like Thailand where tourism is a large part of GDP.

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