Man Jailed In Thailand For Negative Hotel Review

Filed Under: Hotels

Thailand has some of the strictest defamation laws in the world. An American man living in Thailand is experiencing this firsthand right now, as he’s being sued for a negative hotel review that he left online.

Thai hotel accuses guest of defamation

A Facebook user shares how a friend of a friend was punished for a negative review. According to his side of the story:

  • The man was arrested at the school he worked at for posting a one star review on Google Maps about a resort he visited in Koh Chang
  • He was escorted 250km away to face a complaint made against him by the resort owner
  • Since it was a Friday, he ended up spending a couple of nights in jail before he was able to post a 100,000 THB (~3,200 USD) bail; if he didn’t have that money, he would have to wait in jail for a long time

As the Facebook user concludes:

“In most cases, defamation laws are good as they are there to protect us. But it is sometimes abused. To have someone arrested at their workplace for posting a negative review is surely a step too far. Does this now mean none of us should post one star hotel reviews in Thailand?”

So, what was the negative review? He wrote the following:

“The staff was not friendly. Nobody could smile. The restaurant manager was very rude and full of himself. He is from the Czech republic. There are other hotels with better-friendlier staff. Avoid this place as if it was the Coronavirus!”

Is there more to the story?

As you might expect, there is more to the story. That’s not to say that Thailand’s defamation laws don’t take it a bit too far, but…

The hotel claims the following in its response to this guest’s situation:

  • The guest had left two negative reviews, the first of which was removed by TripAdvisor for violating review guidelines
  • The only purpose of the review was to defame the food & beverage manager
  • The guest had dinner in the restaurant the night he arrived at the resort, and brought his own bottle of liquor
  • When he was informed of the corkage fee of 500 THB by an employee, he dismissed her and used abusive language towards her
  • The food & beverage manager then intervened, and he decided to waive the corkage fee to avoid a disturbance
  • The hotel is “surprised” that even after this generous gesture, the guest still wrote negative reviews online
  • “We hope that other resorts don’t have to go through the same experience as the one we had” (hah!)

Next, the hotel had tried to reach out to the guest on several platforms, but he refused to negotiate. The hotel asked that the guest delete all reviews, and told him he needed to refrain from leaving any reviews about the hotel in the future.

After a police report was filed, the hotel said that if he agreed to those terms, they would write a statement to police saying that he has “officially apologized.”

My take on this situation…

I do think Thailand’s defamation laws take things too far. However, unlike the person who shared this story, my conclusions isn’t that this means that “none of us should post one star reviews in Thailand.”

It sure seems to me like this wasn’t a good-faith, negative review of a place. Based on the information presented, it seems to me like this guy might just be a jerk, as the hotel made an accommodation and then he still complained publicly. Furthermore, the hotel did reach out to him, so it’s not like the police just came knocking at his door without him having a clue that the hotel was going after him.

Do I think the punishment is a step too far? Yes. But in a world where “the customer is always right” and where people always tout “freedom of speech” (without understanding what it means), I’m not totally against businesses having some recourse.

Like I said, though, I think the government getting involved is a step too far. I think a better solution is what we’ve seen at airlines — some airline passengers have left vicious notes for flight attendants, and I 100% support airlines banning those passengers. The customer isn’t always right, and everyone deserves a basic level of respect.

Bottom line

An American expat in Thailand is being sued for leaving a negative review of a hotel online. The hotel claimed it was especially accommodating to the guest and waived a corkage fee for a bottle of liquor he brought into the restaurant. The man used abusive language towards the staff, and then still left a negative review online.

The hotel asked him to delete the review, and when he refused, a police report was filed. This caused the man to be arrested.

What do you make of this situation?

(Tip of the hat to Kalil)

  1. I think this highlights the fact that you always need to be aware of the law in the country in which your visiting, whilst I believe this is taking things to the extreme it seems that the said gentleman needed to accept and respect management for reaching out to him, and perhaps under the circumstances at least state that the hotel did try and resolve the situation.

  2. As an American expat living in Thailand I’m not overly concerned by this. Any foreigner living here knows about our strict defamation laws and must abide by them to do so. What’s more shocking is the lack of manners and respect, which is a big deal here.

    While an uncommon occurrence to this extreme, this is not welcome press for the Covid-free Kingdom right now.


  3. What I think is that Thailand is insane and this is ridiculous.

    However, if I chose to live there I would know that already and could easily avoid this problem.

    I may want to visit someday though so I gotta put this under a fake name.

  4. I’m surprised people are taking the hotel’s story at face value. The fact they went to great lengths from one negative review — which isn’t even all that bad — makes then look highly questionable. No sympathy for either party here.

  5. And this lovely farang works (by now probably “worked”) as a teacher? Nothing an insincere wai and a face-saving claim that it was all just a “misunderstanding” couldn’t fix, after all: TIT 555

  6. Is there more to the story like he ignored a court summons to appear in a civil proceeding ?

    It sounds like he was held in contempt and brought before the court. This could happen here regardless of the silliness or merits of the case.

    Otherwise, I would assume Elon Musk would have a warrant out for his arrest for calling that guy a “pedo”.

  7. Lol.. I laughed out loud reading the negative review.. I’m currently an expat living in Prague and oh my the service in Czech Republic is generally so poor…so I can completely understand him hah

  8. The guy might be a jerk, but I would never ever stay at a hotel that would think part of the hospitality business is calling the police to complain about negative reviews online.

  9. It’s critically important to understand and appreciate the law and culture of any foreign land you visit, and act accordingly. Even U. Sam will officially tell you this exact same thing without batting an eyelid!

    There’s absolutely no point complaining about Thai law being drastic or the enforcement being too slow when you chose to go there!!!

  10. @Fanb, I’m FROM the Czech Republic and 100% agree. That’s something Czechs really need to improve. HOWEVER, if you ever want to get an AMAZING customer service that bests the vast majority of 5-star hotels anywhere in the world, czech out Hotel Residence Agnes, even for just 1 night. You’ll be BLOWN AWAY, I guarantee it.

  11. Lucky, “my conclusions isn’t that this means that “none of us should post one star reviews in Thailand.””

    It should certainly be your conclusion if you live within the reach of Thai law enforcement.

  12. THIS:

    “23H says:
    September 26, 2020 at 10:19 am
    The guy might be a jerk, but I would never ever stay at a hotel that would think part of the hospitality business is calling the police to complain about negative reviews online.”

    This place has lost more customers pursuing this guy than it ever would have due to his reviews. I hope whoever buys the property in the bankruptcy sale has thicker skin.

  13. When in Thailand live by the law of the land and you’ll have no problems ,EASY .

    Lived there for 8 fantastic Years & will return .

  14. This isn’t going to end well for the hotel, now that foreign media is covering this. Being known as the hotel that files criminal defamation complaints against its guests can’t be good for business.

  15. While apparently it is legal to bring your own bottle of alcohol with you the guy was a jerk to do so. The establishment has a right to charge or deny anyone to enter their restaurant with their own beverage because the owner doesn’t make money if the guest won’t buy their alcohol. I can understand why the staff may have been a little unhappy and the critic probably offended the staff.

  16. I think it’s interesting. The coronavirus comment at the end was uncalled for and calling out the food and beverage manager like that was a bit extreme.
    Without knowing the context of the supposed first removal, i don’t think either side was right. The hotel was in their right to have to comments of coronavirus and the manager removed, but the guest shouldn’t have had to delete their entire review, but should have acknowledged what the staff did to help. I’ve had times when gestures like that we’re enough to change my mind, but I acknowledge the attempts.

  17. While apparently it is legal to bring your own bottle of alcohol with you the guy was a jerk to do so. The establishment has a right to charge or deny anyone to enter their restaurant with their own beverage because the owner doesn’t make money if the guest won’t buy their alcohol. I can understand why the staff may have been a little unhappy and the critic probably offended the staff. I think the whole point when eating out is to experience the cuisine or specialties of the house.

  18. What do you call an American living and working in Thailand?
    An American “expat”.

    What do you call a Thai person living and working in America?
    A Thai “immigrant”.

    Think about it for a second.

  19. For a man to be arrested and placed in jail for a negative comment about a hotel is completely, totally and fully wrong. Thank god I live in a country (the USA) where this would never ever ever ever happen.

    I have been to Thailand twice and always felt it is a beautiful country. But in recent years, Thailand has become an authoritarian military dictatorship with a mentally deranged monarch who you can’t criticize. It is very sad that a country with such a proud history has declined so much.

  20. I support the hotel! He launched a vendetta online against the hotel, at posted four reviews. Two on TripAdvisor and two at Google. He accused the hotel of something similar to slavery. What started it in the first place was that he brought his own hard liquor to the restaurant and refused to pay a corkage fee.

    However, I do think it is wrong to jail him. That is not the hotels doing but the Thai police, and messes up juridical system. However I do think the hotel also has a right to defend it self and seek compensation when he is trying to ruin the hotels reputation online after acting like a total jerk.

  21. “The staff was not friendly. Nobody could smile. The restaurant manager was very rude”

    he can get all there here in the us, why go so far to get them? he deserved all that treatment by thinking other countries are better.

  22. It really depends on the legal system. For example, a friend of mine posted 1 star for a dentist in Germany, but she was sued by the dentist. Her lawyer suggested they will win the case because freedom of speech is very important in Germany but she had to pay a significant amount of fee for the lawyer to defend her. This is because the dentist said the damage of her 1* review was 15K euros, so she couldn’t sort this out in a small claims court without hiring a lawyer. So eventually, according the lawyer, the process takes a long time and she was pregnant so she couldn’t go back and forth for the court hearing, so ended up removing the review. Doctors in Germany know this, especially the bad ones and they use legal system to remove unfavorable reviews online because to sue someone or defend oneself in Germany is very expensive and only big corporates and rich people can accord to sue or defend them with lawyers. The rest apparently just give up. She was new to Germany so she didn’t have the “legal” insurance (insurance that pays your fees and loss due to a lawsuit) because she didn’t know such a thing existed. So Ben, if you are moving to Germany, make sure you buy that insurance.

  23. The guy might have been a jerk… but am I *ever* going to stay at a hotel that has a reputation for suing (and having arrested) customers who leave poor reviews? Hell no.

    The way to resolve this is for the hotel to explain its take on the situation. As far as I’m aware, every online review forum allows business owners to post a response to any review (positive of negative). Then, potential future customers can make their own decisions.

  24. I guess a nightmare for any hotel or restaurant is to have a guest such as this one. Firstly bringing your own bottle in an F&B is simply cheap and even more cheap. I wouldn’t even allow it, never mind charging a corckage fee. Totally deserved how he was treated.

  25. I have traveled all over thailand and everyone I’ve encountered has been friendly and courteous. Shame on the jerk, the customer is not always right and most of the time rude and belittling to the workers. So lock him up and block his reviews. I look at the reviews and usually book by others comments, so people let’s really be honest and not spiteful because we cannot abuse service workers

  26. Lucky says, “he was able to post a 100,000 THB (~3,200 USD) bail; if he didn’t have that money, he would have to wait in jail for a long time”

    That’s a very expensive bottle of liquor! It would been much cheaper just to pay the 500 THB corkage fee or not drink at all!

  27. This is the danger of over-criminalization which we face in western countries. Free speech in Europe doesn’t exist and people are jailed for expressing themselves or even questioning historical events. Even reading the Bible aloud in public can get you arrested for “hate” speech. Many European countries have the same laws as Thailand that criminalize libel. We do need tougher laws against libel but those should remain civil. A big problem with civil laws is judges commonly abuse their authority and can find someone in contempt of court serving as prosecutor, judge, and jury. In my book no civil charge should ever result in someone being put in jail for any reason. It’s one thing for money to be a stake but freedom should not be a stake in a civil case.

    It’s refreshing how the right wing has become a big advocate for civil liberties and recognizing the danger of over-criminalization. Conservatives need to realize that 90% of laws, cops and the legal system are big government (which we hate).

  28. This guy sounds like a real entitled jerk. He forgot to leave his bad habits at home in the West. This jerk must understand that he is a guest in their country. They can yank his long stay or work visa very easily right out from under him and send him packing back to his dip shit home country.
    These types of farang leave a bad impression on Thai’s thinking that all farang are like him. That’s why I avoid all the high traffic farang areas. I don’t go around flaunting wealth or acting like I’m better than them.

  29. I don’t know why the hotel gave him so much time and energy about this as I would have just ignored him and the review if I were the hotel management. I do read tripadvisor reviews but if there are only 1-2 one star reviews compared to hundreds of 4 or 5 star reviews, I’d discount the negative reviews.
    Imagine what would happen if that guy defamed Thai’s monarch?

  30. They arrested a guy at his job and frickin jailed him over his review. That ends the discussion as far as I am concerned. Don’t really care if the business had their feelings hurt. They were able to respond back with their side and if he was soo far over the line has not to be reasonable this should have been handled in a civil context not having police arresting and jailing people. Thailand has become more and more oppressive over the years. Its a real shame that some think this is an appropriate response to a negative review. If a hotel is legitimate there should be plenty of positive reviews that would far outweigh a negative review like this.

  31. It like you ate KFC and left review there is cockroach in your hamberger, stuffs fart into your hamberger. Sutely he will face court and arrested fot accuse untruth story. Even they polite ask you to remove

  32. Different countries have different laws and beliefs Thailand people as well as a lot of other south east Asia countries are really big on being respectful to each other and take it very seriously, I love to travel and always try to learn understand and abide by the norms of the country that I’m visiting.

  33. This is good to know about Thailand. I don’t want to go there now. It’s one thing if Thailand wants to sue him in a civil court. However, making this a crime? That makes it very easy to abuse the system and jail just about anyone you want. It’s his word against theirs, so good luck getting anyone to believe him over a wealthy resort.

  34. Easy as 1,2,3

    1. The hotel should have replied to his review on the sites with their side of the story
    2. If he didn’t want the bottle service fee he should have left the restaurant.
    3. The restaurant could have asked him to leave if he was as abusive as they say or he could have left if their behavior wasn’t to his liking.

    Truth; in a saving face culture this screamed of that.
    Whit the many options available to the restaurant why this?
    What is missing in this story?

    If /when it goes to court, it would be the restaurant word vs his and who dinned with him, unless video of the table is available. This story seems very light on details. It will boil down to dose he have freedom of speech or not. There are many way to deal with a jerk if he was indeed one the harshest ban him from your restaurant.

    What if you (the reader) one day give a bad review that is deserved in you opinion,the place take it down or we will call the police, are you ready to go to jail? The police being involved is very strange, more like someone who knows someone who’s like ” we’ll teach him a lesson”. This shows that any law can and will be abused or used not as intended. If a law was intended to be used like this, that would lead to uncertain of the country and hurt it economically.

    However one review doesn’t ruin a business (many do) but the reaction to it does. Hospitality industry is taking a beating as well as ppl due to this virus. But I assume all the ppl supporting this action of imprisonment for his review, “will” help keep this place going, I’m… sure… of… it. Nah, the reality, bad word of mouth travels a light speed.

  35. If he is an expat living in the country and wants to leave a negative review without going to jail I would suggest sending an email to a friend outside of the country who can then post the review online. The important thing is leaving the negative review not the name of the person who left it especially when they’re outside of the country.

  36. Well first or 500 Baht is about 16 US dollars. Obviously both parties are at fault the man should have either pay the 16 bucks where would have some extra wine to make up for the difference he probably also didn’t tip anybody anyting. The hotel and their stupidity made a mountain out of a molehill and that’s probably lost several hundred guests from the ridiculist arrest and complained to the police. This goes to show if you going to a nice hotel and you don’t get treated right just check out and go elsewhere

  37. Sounds like an immature entitles person. He was a guest in the country and at the hotel, but that does not give him the right to be disrespectful to staff. He got what he deserved.

  38. Your article makes people misunderstood the situation. It is not about the review. Some wrote bad review and they never once have been to the hotel. Poeple have been bulling each other. All because of POLITICAL ISSUE that happening in Thailand right now. Pls study about what is going on in Thailand before you cut only one chunk and make it a new.

  39. The list of places I’m eager to visit just got re-ordered. The problem was not the behavior of management the Sea View Resort Koh Chang, it was the Thai legal system that made this happen. I’m not saying my culture is “better” just that I try to keep my spending in line with what I value including freedom of speech.

  40. Lock him up and throw away the key. An ugly American. There is no hotel restaurant in America where you can take your own booze. He knows that. After he was advised he was breaking the rules he became rude and abusive to hotel personnel. This behavior in a part of the world where respect is an important aspect of societal functioning. After someone in his party acted to calm the situation and the corkage fee was rescinded, thereafter he filed a false review of the hotel and then refused to respond to overtures from the hotel for him to apologize and let the matter be over. Now, it’s a court matter and he has to deal with the consequences of acting like a jerk in a foreign nation.

  41. The problem started because he tried to get away without paying corkage fee that’s it !
    When restaurants have a policy to charge for corkage fee , you pay for it or don’t bring your bottle … it ?
    Don’t be such a cheap ass and try to be superior anywhere just because you are Farang !

  42. I personally believe that all people at the hotel who deemed this appropriate, all judicial employees who deemed this appropriate, as well as the police who carried out the petty, childish duties all deserve public flogging.
    In Alaska if any if this happened to us or our neighbors, we would respond with significant, and persistent force.

  43. I can’t give a comment that he really deserved the jail, because I never see what he writes. Anyway, in Thailand, whatever negative reviews or one star won’t bring anyone to jail or police station, if their comments aren’t abusive.
    We sometimes have these cases on the social media. The customers made the bad reviews with abusive language, but their story were not 100% real fact. Then the business owner reported to police with the evidence, mostly CCTV video. Most of social media cases, the police won’t go to arrest (especially the people who live far away) without evidence.

  44. All of us who travel frequently have some negative experiences including in Thailand where I live and work. But on the very limited number of occasions I have in my own mind reasons to be less than satisfied with what I think I have paid for I have decided to desist from complaining or at least in the public domain. Rather I move on instead of letting off steam. Now I am not suggesting that people don’t post their comments online but in the case of Thailand one needs to remember those on a vendetta can use the libel laws to make life very difficult. A colleague of mine disparaged one of his clients – an American living in Thailand – who via his Thai lawyer took the colleague to court and while the case was eventually thrown out (it dragged on for 18 months) my colleague had firked out US$50,000 in legal fees. The only winner here was of course the Thai lawyer. So, my advice is not to go down the path this seemingly entitled complainant went down: at least not in Thailand.

  45. “Nathan:

    This place has lost more customers pursuing this guy than it ever would have due to his reviews. I hope whoever buys the property in the bankruptcy sale has thicker skin.”

    And you’re delusional. Clearly you have an entitled attitude and probably leave 1-star reviews for businesses without thinking how that affects them. [email protected] the guy for being an as$hole and you too for having a similar attitude.

  46. Reading his reviews was against staff in general, and their customer’s services skills, which cause me to believe he was telling the truth. Maybe, the staff was rude, and they need customer service training. Instead of management having him attested should look at his staff. I am sure these complaints
    about his staff wasn’t the first time.

  47. The customer is always right is an approach not a fact ,

    You even have internal customers as well as external customers, ie people you work with .

    22 years experience in guest, customer based professional approach.

    4 key goals are,

    No matter what your product.
    Delivery of the above 4 and you won’t go far wrong.

    Take a 2 seconds to think about any product you’ve ever purchased, food , house, car ,paying a bill , gas electricity …

    I’ve stolen those 4 key points from a very well known fizzy soda company I used to work for .

    I’m not that smart ..

  48. I was thought as a child to either say something nice or nothing at all. Furthermore all he should have posted is that the service did not meet his expectations.

    What the article does not mention is that Thais face the same issues and it is not only non Thais that face very tough deformation laws. I live for over 10 years in Thailand and respect their laws,. Freedom of speech here does not mean that you willfully can present an alternet truth. If you misrepresent something you might face the law especially when given a chance to mitigate and ignore it because you are sitting on a high horse.

    And for all others always remember the ancient say: “When in Rome, do as the Romans do”

  49. @Aziz, in any country, person coming with an intent to stay permanently is immigrant, and someone coming to work temporarily (and especially employed by company in home country) is an expat

    On Lucky’s idea on banning problematic customers, the issue is there are only so many airlines and very many hotels. A ban from hotel (unless it is major chain) won’t be all that effective.

  50. I usually read comments. I eliminate the most negative comment and the most positive, I make my choices based on the remaining info. When I travel to different countries I strive to do a bit of research re the culture, traditions, policies that might impact tourists and to learn at least a few words/phrases. I feel such respect is important, I know it is important to me.

    In one of the comments to this article JR blasted the FARANGS. I researched that slang. It is a slam against white people visiting or living in Thailand. He also suggested the ‘shithole’ return to his country. On behalf of who or what caused your obvious pain I am sorry. Such anger and borderline hatred is usually caused by a painful experience – maybe more than one. I am truly sorry. I wish you happiness and peace.

  51. @ Aziz
    An American working in another Country LEGALLY, following the rules that apply would be called an expat.
    A Thai possibly working in the US without legal status to work would likely be called an immigrant.
    A Thai working in the US with legal status would be called an expat. This scenario is not that common and I never had to use the term.
    It all hinges on the reason for being in a Country and whether someone was overstaying a visit or had permission to work, which is usually not given to visitors.

  52. I find it hard to believe anyone thinks the prospect of spending years in jail is acceptable for a negative review on a website.

  53. On more than one occasion I have been accused of being rude by management for simply complaining.. Eg that the shower want working or there went the promised /advertise facilties. I keep my cool in face of such provocation and maybe this guy didn’t. I certainly wouldn’t exonerate eithier party without more facts/being a witness.

  54. While basically in the right, the hotel handled the situation poorly in involving the police. Seems like a fair proportion of the management are expats of one sort or another, and there are many English-language references so the hotel is clearly geared to Westerners. Surely then they would know to expect a few crass or obnoxious guests, and just suck up a random criticism.
    If that 1* review stood out in a sea of 4 or 5 * complimentary reviews any reader would likely dismiss it as a disgruntled or contrary person and disregard it. If it continued a theme, well…

  55. “Don’t be a dick” is pretty much rule #1 in Thailand. As an expat, he knows this. He could have easily remedied the entire situation by NOT continuing to be a dick.

    He wanted to play hardball in a country that doesn’t play that game. Lesson learned.

  56. People’s views of free speech expressed here are extremely disturbing. NOTHING in the review reported contained anything that was factually untrue. The hotel didn’t like his opinion. Tough. Free speech means you get to have dumb and wrong opinions no matter how much damage they do. If you infringe on people’s right to have wrong opinions you necessarily infringe on their rights to have righteous opinions. Even if he had written something factually wrong it’s outrageous that defamation would be criminalized in any country.

  57. I viewed the 1* comment on Trip Advisor and was shocked to see that he was not alone with his negative review/s, there are dozens of other negative comments from many other customers at different times and many of them much more severe in their tone than his. So the question is; why was he zeroes in on, is there something else we don’t know?

  58. Following with their country’s policies is one thing. Stifling on ones freedom due to a negative review reeks of CCP oppression. Right or not I’d avoid that hotel (for that matter, whole country) in the event you feel the necessity to voice your disagreement to their services.

  59. I looked deeper into this incident AND the legal charges are NOT based on the published 1-star reviews BUT on the one review which was removed by TripAdvisor for violating their T&Cs. He named the staff and really used derogatory language. There’s a screenshot of the now banned review available on Twitter, shared by one of TH’s major English-speaking news outlets

  60. I side with the hotel, I know not to bring booze to hotels. Hotels is where you BUY the stuff, not to bring it along. Every body knows that, without exception.
    If I ever get the chance, I will check into this hotel to to see, if they are as curtious as any other hotel, if I leave my booze in the car

  61. He should have read the fine print when checking in “Please note all guests that leave a poor review of the Sea View Resort Koh Chang will receive a complimentary 2 year stay in a Thai prison” 🙂

    Koh Chang is full of Thai mafia types who own hotels and other Businesses and they do not like reviews that tell the truth.

    The police are in their back pockets of all many of the big business on the island, this American was arrested very quickly without even a proper investigation of the facts.

    Tourists who value their safety and rights to have an opinion should not visit Koh Chang and also be very careful in all parts of Thailand these days.

    Amazing Thailand, The land of smiles it’s NOT these days.

  62. Endless respect and regard to the owner of the hotel. There are too many people who travel searching for problems, who think everything is for free, complaining for absurde things and who write offensive or false and reviews. As owner of a hotel I saw too many times. No protection from (they publish even offensive reviews), some from Tripadvisor, but the damages for a hotel from these horrible people are huge. We even were forced to denounce two customers, but we couln’t do anything as they live abroad and the review remained x 2 year in Otherwise they risked to go in jail. To be offended in a (who responded to our protests saying it was a personal opinion by guests and menaced us to exclude from their hotels’ list) review by people who made incredibly horrible things here was one of the worst experiences we had with customers, but sadly not the only one. So again big respect, solidarity, esteem to the owner of this hotel. Horrible customers and above all people like this deserve death sentence, not 1 day in jail. World would be better.

  63. Cause and Effect.

    karma bites hard.

    But prison is too much. just ask the gentleman to leave. It doesn’t need to go beyond that.

  64. I must pay however shocking this is certain individual had the option to negotiate directly with the hotel after they reached out him I personally think he thoroughly deserves everything that you got however some of the blame must lay with TripAdvisor as they’re all too easy to allow nasty comments to be made about certain businesses without checking with the business First to see four went on a far better way would be to wait for a response from the business before negative comments were put on TripAdvisor bike cleaned health so even though I think the man clearly deserved what he got TripAdvisor should be there with him soldering some of the responsibility for the damage in stimulated on the hotel

  65. The hotel acted even more immaturely, and should never call the police for a negative review. I hope they go bankrupt.

  66. I agree with the resort on this one. In a time where tourism in Thailand has declined significantly a 1 star review may sway the few travellers necessary to remain business. Having seen their comments I am more likely to consider staying there. I’m sure the content of the initial review likely shed a lot of light on the reviewers true intent to do harm to the manager and resort. A stay in jail seems harsh but I think appropriate as the bail is likely about 3 months of his salary will hopefully smarten him up to being more considerate in the land of smiles. If Thailand is smart they will take this into consideration in his next visa renewal.

  67. Honestly, some people in the resort service industry have poor confrontation skills. They are fine until they encounter a customer who doesn’t adhere to their rules to the tee. I’ve seen one employee who was monitoring hand washing before entering the buffet area. This one kid didn’t wash his hands and proceeded to the buffet area, the female employee grabbed him. She only let go when the kid called for his dad who yelled at the employee who then reminded the father that his son had to wash his hands. He intimidated the employed by yelling in her face that he already washed his hands when he clearly didn’t because i saw the kid behind me and somehow warped his way ahead of me bypassing all the wash stations. Regardless, she should not have put her hands on the kid. Another time, I saw a man ahead of me waiting in the customer service line where he was next in line when he was stopped by a middle man employee who asked him a series of questions before he approached customer service. The way the employee just stepped in front of him like border patrol with his hand 6 inches from his face would have been more than enough for me to yell at him entering my personal space but not this customer. His face turned pink then more reddish at the series of questions being asked of him like stupid ones like “How do you like your stay so far? Is this your first time addressing your problem with customer service?” Eventually, the customer reached his melting pot, and calmly ending the interrogation questions with something like ” You can either move outta my way or I will make you move.” I couldn’t stop laughing , all the toughness out of the employee drained from him instantly. The employee stepped back and his eyes were looking all around the room like he wanted to find a place to hide. Immediately before things got worse, the customer service agent shouted “Next!” and the customer proceeded to the agent. He just wanted some type of upgrade for a beach excursion. The middle man agent didn’t ask me as many questions as the customer before me. I could hear previous customer complaining to the agent that his vacation was going great until that guy, then he pointed to the agent. At this point, the middle man agent took his break and I didn’t see him again in the customer service area. Again, here clearly he had a hostile presence and his monotone voice didn’t help much. And , I’m really surprised that he was so oblivious to the fact that the customer’s flesh tone was turning into a tomato. Things could have went really south if that agent didn’t yell “Next!”
    Okay, back to this story, given my experience. I believe that the resort was doing everything in their corrupt power to make themselves look good by saying they did this this this for the customer. Maybe they did, but probably in a derogatory hostile manner. They also were really adamant about removing a negative review from a public web site to the extent that they got the police involved which makes me think they probably used this technique before against all bad reviewers that they can detain. The only difference here was that it was news worthy because it involved an American who wrote multiple reviews. Congratulations to the hotel for succeeding in removing the negative review by jailing the customer. Oh yeah, good luck with trying to remove all the news articles that clearly state customer jailed from negative review at Sea View Resort in Thailand. You not only damaged your hotel but now all potential customers who read those articles are fully aware what could happen if you go to a hotel resort anywhere in Thailand and don’t like the service. Eghhh. That’s too bad. I really had no ill will towards travelling to Thailand until i read this article. Now, I have to second guess it.

  68. This guy is a major league JERK ! Would he try that sh*t in a hotel or restaurant in America or Europe. NO!!! I Have been living in Thailand for ten years and never, ever had a problem. I think at least half expats living here are racist – in the sense that they think they are somehow superior to the Thai people and think that the Thais have to bow to their whims. If you give respect you get respect.
    Quite frankly I doubt if this guy is a teacher – any self respecting teacher would know and understand the Thai culture.
    As for Eric H who said….Quote…
    “Thailand has become an authoritarian military dictatorship with a mentally deranged monarch….” Unquote.
    He better not come back to Thailand or he’ll know what its like to spend a few years in a Thai jail !!

  69. Gawd. One swallow does not mean summer has arrived nor do the actions of the hotel guest – who appears to be a bit of a prat – or the hotel management means it is like this everywhere in Thailand or indeed in most places in Thailand. This experience could have occurred anywhere in the world and I am not sure what the complainant has to gain by posting this particular complaint online. Still, notwithstanding Thailand’s “archaic” libel laws locking the complainant up for 2 nights and then extracting THB100,000 is a bit rich. Good wine in Thailand is grossly over-priced but at Wine Connection I could order over 5 dozen quaffable wines for that price. I am afraid to say that I hope my 14-year-old son is not taught by the complainant.

  70. Thai tourists that has been visiting Phuket do post negative reviews sometime…. and if the owner of that particular business was stained with untrue reviews, they can take it up for clarification in the police station. I believed few incidents was solved and settled by filing the proceeding.
    If the reviewer has gone hiding or avoiding to face the truth, then they should face the consequences. This to prevent people from posting fake reviews on the media.
    My little bar was a victim of such incident in the past too. A foreigner was having a happy mood and buying everybody drinks but when paying time, he was drunk and denied he didn’t buy people drinks. He paid only his drinks and a day later post a remark that we cheat him on the media. You see, these are the type of people who’s giving the foreigner a bad name.

  71. When abroad play by the treat people as you expect to be treated.
    2 experiences for you.
    Sorry to say both relate to Americans. Please note in my travelling experience not all Americans are the same.
    1. American group of 4 people missed there flight. Time was New Year Period. One of the Male contingent was very vocal and rude to the staff. The airport staff who was trying to help. Note he was shouting. Not communicating.
    We had been assisted with our flight. Advised the issue, person gave e best possible solution. That is us happy.
    We went to intervene, indirectly . We spoke to the remaining members of the group.
    Advice was remoe your friend from the issue. One of you apologise for me what happened. Explain your issue. See what can be achieved. I think you all agree. This method would stand up in any country.
    A little hint of if this incident would have carried on the Police would have been involved .
    2. Second incident which may sound crazy a Hired Moped
    Is parked on the wrong side of the road. Note under a sign that says only parking on certain days. The sign in Thai and English. Here is what happened. I’m an American was being shouted you cannot do this. I complain to US Abassador.
    All the guy had to do was pay a small fine. He said he did not have any money..
    My friends wife tried to offer to pay the fine and for him to pay back later. That did not work so we left him to resolve is own issue.
    I’m sure the US Ambassador would assist him by advising to not create an Internaional Incident . Follow the law. Not waste is time.
    I’m sure you all agree ,regardless of Nationality there will always be idiots who are self important. Lack manners and common sense.
    In relation to the incident I’m sure we all agree if you put any comment about anything. Make it truthful and back it up. Sorry I’m on the resorts side on this one.

  72. The guest sounds like a drunken jerk, and a sober jerk as well. The hotel should have thrown him out and banned him, but not have him arrested, that’s going too far IMHO. However it was within their right to do so, due to the strict defamation law.

  73. I hope the guy countersues the hotel & the manager and uses Thailand’s strict anti-defamation laws to his advantage.

    Surely, in a country where you can get arrested for expressing a legitimate opinion without the offended party having to prove the intent of causing unjust harm (regardless of whether the facts are true or not), then the hotel’s response (publicly accusing the guest in an online post of causing a disruption and of being abusive towards an employee) is *also* defamatory. See how the hotel manager likes having the law abused on him…

  74. It seems like everyone in the comments is taking the resort’s statement as literal gospel. Whether the customer was rude or not, whether he posted a misleading review or not, we don’t really know. We should ALL be able to agree that being thrown in jail for an online review is draconian, and I am disgusted by every one of you that is advocating that without knowing both sides of the story.

    Also, shame on Ben Schlepp (aka Lucky) for posting his opinion as straight fact.

  75. @Lucky- since when did the world become a place of “The customer is always right”? That’s an annoyingly bad habit a lot of Americans have; taking an Americanist view of the entire planet. Things that are more so products of American consumer culture has nothing to do with the world. If you’ve ever been to France and many other countries, you know that the customer is rarely right, let alone always and is in many cases an utter asshole.

    And @Aziz and @Donato an immigrant and expat are usually denoted by opportunities afforded in one country over another and social mobility. A Thai person working legally in the US as a cab driver or maid in a motel is not an expat but an immigrant because the idea is that these jobs afford them greater upward mobility in the US. Most people going from a country with economic challenges and/or greater government restrictions/oppression are seen as immigrants. Most people going from wealthier countries to “poorer” countries are seen as expats because chances are they’re not going to that country as a means of opportunity they can’t find in their homeland. The guy in this story is probably teaching English in Thailand and I’m pretty sure what they’re paying him allows him to live comfortably in Thailand, but I guarantee you, whatever that asshole did in the US professionally, he made more money than he’s being paid to teach in Thailand. He definitely didn’t leave a “wealthier” country to find greater prosperity and success in Thailand. Like most farang, he probably has a fetish for Asian women and knows his chances of romance with them are greater where the majority are so economically depressed.

  76. probably a typical obnoxious American. reminds me of the american kid in Singapore who vandalized cars, and the US was outraged when he received a public whipping for his crime. Not that I totally agree with the defamation issues, but when in other countries, you need to be mindful of local laws, customs and norms.

  77. Curiously, you never gave the guest’s response. We only know what the hotel thinks. Since the hotel is full of itself and will arrest people who complain about it, you are giving the hotel more credit than it deserves. Why should I believe the hotel’s explanation for why it had a guest arrested for posting a bad review? Also, are you being paid off by anyone? What are your personal connections to this?

  78. You are posting a negative review of the guest. In the mindset of Thailand, you could be arrested for defamation. Like you, I travel all over the world. Last year, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, Nigeria, Ghana, Togo, Sierra Leone, Ireland, England, France, Costa Rica, and Colombia. I depend on guest reviews. Customers like me don’t base our decision on one review. Let the review process work itself out. Based on this article, I would never go to this resort. Neither should any other person who expects good service without fear. As they say in Mexico, “no way Jose.” Smile

  79. Living in Thailand, there are times one feels that different rules apply to expats here. That being said, I’ve never seen or experienced anything egregious in my three years here. In fact, I have found Thailand and her people to be exceedingly committed to making sure guests and customers feel comfortable, happy, and taken care of – ESPECIALLY when they learn that you are living in their country and genuinely appreciate it. Why? Well, firstly because they genuinely care and are proud of their country. But, secondly, they know that the farang living in Thailand make way more money than any local does and, as a result, tend to avoid any type of confrontation with us as they perceive us as having influence or power – influence and power that could get them fired. The number of times I have cringed at the spoiled behavior of my fellow Americans living here – or Brits, Aussies, or Russians acting like they own the place, especially after a few Changs – is, at this point, innumerable. The customer is not always right, contrary to popular, white Western belief, and it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if the hotel and its staff rightfully felt abused.

  80. The intent of these laws is to intimidate, brow-beat and harass; we’ve seen it before used against researchers on labour conditions . Regardless of the suggestion that the guy may be a ‘jerk’, the use of the laws in this way is not “a step too far”, but rather completely outrageous. Foreign tourists/ short term visitors seem not to understand that courts will find against them in 99.99999% of cases, something well-known to expats. The only ‘protected species’ in the country is the ‘hiso’ privileged elite: they can do anything, inter alia , murder, fraud, theft, drug and people smuggling, insider trading, drunk driving…with impunity.

  81. @Paulo is 100% correct – These defamation laws used against this guy were first created so that the military junta dictators who are presently running (destroying) Thailand could silence their critics.

    These days even Thailand media will not report on most high-profile cases involving politicians, rip-off businesses and persons with money who have done the wrong thing as they fear of being taken to court and the reporter ending up in jail.

    Thais with money and power have preferred to use this BS law to pursue criminal (go to jail) lawsuits against anyone who dares to call them out over just the smallest issues, they well know the thought of being locked up in a Thai jail for years is a bigger threat to someone rather than being forced to pay a monetary compensation.

    Even if you report or place the truth in print, radio or online you can get thrown in jail, the courts and police in Thailand only are only on the side of the team with the most money. Most Thais these days have zero rights or freedom of free speech or opinion, so foreigners have even less rights than most Thais, so go figure where you stand in the pecking order of Thailand if you visit.

    These laws are now being used all the time against Thais and now being used against foreigners (like in this Sea View Hotel case on Koh Chang) This law was also used against human rights defender Englishman Andy Hall who spoke up about the modern-day slavery practices being used by rich Thais on the Chicken farms owned by the Thammakaset Co.

    This guy in the Koh Chang Sea View Resort review mentioned the word “slaves” which may not be a good choice of words but it hit a nerve with the rich Thai owner of the resort. The staff are probably just very unhappy workers, poor pay and conditions is the normal for many Thai staff unfortunately.

    TripAdvisor may just have to remove all options for leaving a review about a Thailand business. The likes of TripAdvisor already have many thousands of scathing 1-star reviews about taxis, restaurants, tours, bars, things to do and hotels in Thailand.

    You could rate any Thailand business or service (not just a hotel) a 1-star and be thrown in jail with this precedent. Even if you don’t make any written comments, they could use this law against you for just leaving a 1-star rating and you will need to pay your way out of it, prove the 1-star is genuine (good luck) or spend some time in a cockroach infested jail cell.

    This will probably be the start of many cases against a foreigner who dares to criticize a Thai business in any online review about pretty much anything.

    For many reasons Thailand is not 🙁 the welcoming country it was years ago for foreigners so be very careful if you plan a visit.

    PS: From my own personal bad experience i highly suggest you do not visit Koh Chang.

  82. The criminal deformation laws should be scrapped and only civil laws should apply. The main reason is that people who state criminal activities of companies are slapped with a criminal complaint by the wrongdoers. There are plenty of cases where factory owners do this just to tie up individuals with lengthy court cases at great expense to them.

  83. I can agree with both sides of the situation. His review was primarily targeted and not well rounded, so the feedback from the hotel was correct it did look targeted. Also, many people do leave bad reviews especially in a situation when the guest feels entitled. On a non-English language travel forum a guest of no status demanded an upgrade to a suite at a hotel and then complained in the community online that he did not get it, etc. I do think there are two sides to every story. Perhaps something kind of in the middle is close to the truth.

  84. Amazing Thailand – One day you can be a paying guest at the Sea View Beach Resort on Koh Chang and the next day the hotel owner will have you put in jail.

    I feel sorry for this guy, he has possibly made a mistake in some things that he may have said in the review on TripAdvisor but he does not deserve to be in jail thanks to the Sea View Resort Koh Chang.

    Without stating the obvious, this is exactly not the PR that the destroyed Thailand tourism industry needs at the moment. But at least we know now that this criminal law can be used against any foreigners in Thailand for such trivial things.

    Well at least with this case, it’s clear on what you should expect if you leave a bad review about any Thai business like the Sea View Beach Resort on Koh Chang if they do not agree with your comments.

    It does not matter where you post a negative comment about a Thai business be it on any hotel supplier website, FB, Lazada Thailand, Shopee Thailand, twitter or other platform you could be in big trouble in the not so “Land of Smiles” if someone gets upset with your rating.

    If you are charged for defamation, even if your posted review is 100% accurate, the onus will be on you “the reviewer” to prove that the review or comments posted were truthful if the business has a different opinion to yours.

    You will need to prove your case in a Thai court of law where no one can understand any English. The law is already very biased in Thailand towards the rich and powerful and never in the favor of a foreigner or the average Thai in fact.

    No matter if you have been scammed at one of the thousands of Thailand tourist traps, been served a Pad Thai that gave you food poisoning, have been transported by a dangerous crack head bus driver or stayed at a hotel room with bed bugs, well you better not tell anyone about your poor experience.

    Unless you are safely back in your own country it may be ok to blow the whistle on a crappy experience but you could face arrest also on you return to Thailand if the review has pissed off someone enough.

    Don’t forget, hotels in Thailand always take a copy of your passport when you check-in, you may not be able to leave the country if the shit hits the fan when you post a review that some Thai does not like.

    This defamation law may probably become another popular way to extract a few bucks from foreigners by the Thai police who are useless but are “shakedown / extortion experts”.

    The owner of the Sea View Resort Koh Chang appears not to like foreigners – but he does like taking their money!

    Is this a good hotel to stay at on Koh Chang? NO………

  85. Obviously both parties here did things that were dumb — the American escalated when he should have understood that foreign laws are different, and the hotel should have realized the bad press that would result from jailing a customer over a bad review.

    Yes, everyone (except this guy?) knows that Thailand has some laws that are famously more restrictive regarding allowable speech. It’s not especially helpful to criticize the laws, when the point is that as a guest in that country you must follow them. If you are unwilling to comply with these laws, you shouldn’t go there.

  86. The criminal defamation charge brought against this guy for the review of the Koh Chang Sea View Hotel Resort is a precedent (to my knowledge) against a foreigner or in fact anyone, not even a local Thai has not faced similar libel charges for a hotel review in Thailand.

    Thanks to this law free speech does not exist in Thailand anymore. The media in Thailand these days are a lame duck, they dare not speak out badly about the corrupt politicians or any of the wealthy elite who run Thailand from the shadows.

    Any foreigner who leaves a bad review or a comment on any platform about a Thai business or an individual person could end up in the exact same situation. Should you have had a terrible experience in Thailand, well writing about it just may get you some jail time.

    Goes like this – You write a factual negative review about say a hotel:
    Owner of reviewed hotel does not agree > hotel owner goes to police makes complaint > police create a defamation charge (no investigation needed as it’s Thai vs foreigners word) > you get arrested, they confiscate your passport, you spend a few nights in jail until you can post bail money > you post bail money and are released > you await trail which could be 6 months or more > you hire Thai lawyer costing you a small fortune > you go to trial and most likely you lose > you get a huge fine and/or jail time up to 2 years. Thanks for visiting Thailand 🙂

    No matter how truthful your review may be, it will not matter in the Thai legal system which is corrupt and biased to the core. It’s going to be your word against a Thai’s word so who do you think is going to win? Regardless of any facts, you have already lost your case from the day that you are charged by the police.

    Some Thais like the owner of the Sea View Hotel Koh Chang seem to get pleasure in punishing foreigners severely any chance they get, it gives them this power trip of superiority of sorts.

    The owner of this resort knew exactly what this would lead too when he made this defamation complaint to the police over this review. He has “cut off his own nose to spite his face” with these actions against this American.

    Should you intend to visit Thailand in the future you should understand the many dangers to your personal safety. Seems like Thai’s don’t need to beat up complaining customers anymore, just use this law to silence them.

    With the present state of the country run by the military army generals, If you value the wellbeing and safety of yourself and your family you should seriously think twice about taking a vacation to Thailand.

  87. It is quite a shame you are not calling out the hotel more for this. This isn’t even about the police. It is the hotel. It really isn’t even about the law, because while this law exists, I would guess most hotels in Thailand don’t pursue people for leaving poor, even potentially inaccurate, reviews. The fact that this hotel wants someone to spend 2 years in prison for refusing to remove his 1 star review says everything you need to know about this hotel. And no, it is not about the previous review that was removed. Because they are saying if he removes the review that is up, they will no longer pursue the case against him, and he can go free. Therefore, they want him to spend 2 years in prison for keeping the 1 star review online. This is beyond unreasonable and regardless of how nasty a guest this guy might have been, the decision of the hotel to press on with this is surely doing far more to their reputation than one poor review. The fact that the law allows them to do this does not force them to do this. It is completely the hotel’s decision to do this and therefore, I imagine many people will not want to stay at the hotel for fear that they will not be the model guests that the hotel expects them to be.

  88. What would become of this story if this American ends up dead in a Thai jail – will TripAdvisor step up and take responsibility for his misfortune?

  89. Ok so I don’t usually post here, but I thought I would share some info in support of Lucky here, and the hotel. I have worked in hospitality at the front desk of a hotel, and while bad reviews were few and far between they do hurt a hotel’s bottom line. Sounds like there is also mote to the story than we knew. The man in question also has a criminal record in the U.S. for firing firearms in crowded public areas, and in my mind may not be a character that you would want to confront. See full news video from Thaiger here: (wait till the end:

    As someone who has visited thailand, I can attest that the hospitality industry there goes above and beyond to make guests happy in a way that is not that common in the U.S. and respect and kindness are expected of both guests and employees. I have even had to kindly complain about something, and was offered a different room to suit my needs, which was unexpected but appreciated. Most hotels in Thailand would do that same, and it sounds like in the situation with this guest the hotel was more than accommodating.

    Ben, thank you for your thoughts and I support your mission to deliver important news and updates about the travel industry! Stay safe in Germany!

  90. Mr Pisut Rattanawong the president of the of the Sea View Resort Ko Chang seems like a mean and vindictive person. He has gone out of his to get this guy placed in prison for the “mega crime” of just some poor reviews. Why would anyone want to stay at a place where an owner seems to hate foreigners so much.

  91. Having seen the nasty side of the locals towards tourists first hand and nothing would surprise me about what really happened at the Sea View Ko Chang resort.

    Our story….I visited Ko Chang in June 2018 and this was our horrible experience.

    We ordered 2 drinks at a small bar and the bill come to 340 Baht’s, I put a 1000 baht’s note in the bill folder when we were finished, the staff took the bill folder and did not return with any change.

    I asked about my change politely as I thought he must have just forgotten; he said rudely “we no change today, that tip for us”.

    I said that’s dishonest, he said back loudly “you go complain police if you no happy”, “who you think police best friends with on island, you farang want have big problem? you go now!”

    What could we do, it was just me and my girlfriend at the bar and we felt we could have a physical threat from him and / or his local police “friends”. if we wanted to take this further we would obviously not win.

    We left the next day from the island as we felt this was not a safe place to be in, especially for two girls traveling together. We would not ever visit Thailand again due to this experience. I have read many other reports of scams being pulled on tourists and some that had physical harm upon them when they would not just walk away and forget it with the local Thai men.

  92. The Koh Chang Sea View Resort should be removed from TripAdvisor for having a guest placed in jail, how stupid are the owners and management of this place. What a PR disaster they have created for themselves over just a few reviews that know one would have ever seen or given a f### about anyway.

    If you leave a 1 star for any Thai business on a review site regardless of the how accurate your opinion is you could end up in jail also.

    Thailand these days only wants Chinese tourists anyway, i visited Pattaya and Phuket last year and i may have gone for a holiday in China.

    Regardless of these oppressive laws they are using against tourists now Thailand is off my vacation list anyway.

  93. If you leave a bad review about a Thai hotel you may just get a visit from the police if they can track you down. Normally this is all that happens, the police and the hotel operator can make a lot of money from tourists who leave a bad review about their crappy business.

    To resolve the problem of the bad review the tourist provides Thai police with 100 000 to 200 000 baht – USD 6500 with no receipts given, the bad review is removed by the tourist and everyone is happy (well except for the tourist). This hotel review scam is becoming a common practice but is not mentioned in the media that much.

    If you stay in a brand name hotel like Marriott, Accor, Ibis, Holiday Inn etc you will never have a problem when leaving a bad review if required. It’s only the local Thai owned hotels where you will have problems if you leave a bad review, even if it’s the truth just don’t review them or safer still only stay in a brand name hotel when in Thailand.

    Many scams are quite common in high tourist areas like Pattaya, Phuket Phi Phi and Samui. Normally tourists get scammed for things like not having the correct motor bike license, or bars / shops will give the wrong change on purpose or Thai police plant drugs in the pockets of tourists and then arrest them.

    Don’t just take my word for it read about Thailand scams here from the USA embassy…..

  94. Having read the reviews on TripAdvisor about the Sea View Koh Chang i would say most of the negative reviews are genuine and the positive reviews are done by paid writer services or written by management.

    My experience…..

    I stayed at this dump back in December 2019 and luckily we just booked for 1 night. The toilet stank of urine, the bed was as hard as a rock, the room had cockroaches crawling around at night, the shower was full of mold, the AC did not work and the breakfast was just beyond disgusting.

    It seemed like the Sea View Resort was being run into the ground, from the looks of the place it was just falling apart everywhere.

    Looks like Wesley Barnes has been jailed for telling the truth about this rat hole. I for one will not be using TripAvisor ever again.

    @Karen Barnes
    Yes i do agree the scams in Thailand these days are out of control, my friend made the very stupid mistake of hiring a car in Phuket. When he returned the car rental people very quickly pointed out the smallest half inch scratch on the rear fender (was most likely their from the beginning). They charged him 6000 Baht – 200 USD for this scratch, he could not do a thing but pay as he made the big mistake of leaving his passport with these mafia car hire people.

  95. i think the expatriate just conveyed his disappointment with the hotel service which he thought was very bad

    apart from that, thailand has a very bad service to tourists from abroad, as experienced by a famous youTuber from Indonesia.

    getting very bad service from a taxi driver

    with so many negative reviews, the thai government should improve its tourism services

  96. @ tom yung gong

    Thai Taxi drivers are all big scammers, most of the them have what is called a “turbo meter” installed. When a tourist gets in the taxi the driver flips a switch under the dashboard, the meter then doubles or triples the actual distance and time travelled resulting in a big bonus for him.

    The Thai government does not give a shit about normal tourists if they get ripped off in any way, they only want the Chinese on tour groups so the money stays in the same circle of the big corrupt people which are friends and family of the Army controlled dictator government.

  97. That is not strictly correct. There are good and bad taxi drivers. Talk to many ordinary taxi drivers and they struggle – even more so as a result of the pandemic – to make 300 Thai Baht per day. Such a comment reflects the readers inability or unwillingness to acknowledge such an issue. As for Chinese tourists, so what? Of course the Thai ruling classes want to encourage them. Why not? They live close by and like to spend CNY some of whicu incidentally does not simply go into the hands of “big corrupt people” but also to other Thais who provide a diverse range of “goods-and-services” and who this significantly dependent tourist economy have been severely impacted upon. So, being “ripped”off by a taxi driver or two – well now you can hail GRAB at least in Bangkok – if you have the time and financial resources to acquire the status of a Special Tourist Visa holder you can also take advantage of.

  98. Wow what a horrible hotel the Koh Chang Sea View is. To put someone in jail for writing a review about how terrible they were is just beyond disgusting.

    I have never been to Koh Chang and never will after reading these stories above. I was last in Thailand 2 years ago and even then it was nothing special to speak highly about.

    Can’t say i had a good time as generally i had a poor experience, Thais treat tourists quite badly behind their fake smiles.

    I was shitting my pants on the way from the Bangkok airport to our hotel as the crack head taxi driver we had was speeding at up to 150 KPH, no wonder 60 + people a day die on Thai roads.

  99. @Cher Conner

    LOL – Those Thai taxi drivers are all budding Lewis Hamiltons 🙂

    If they ain’t trying to scam tourists they are trying to kill them in a road accident.

    My Koh Chang Seaview Resort Restaurant Review.

    My wife and i had lunch at the Koh Chang Sea View back in January this year, we had some fried fish and a pork dish with some vegetables off the menu.

    Just 1 hour after eating we both had acute diarrhea and vomiting, lucky for us after a few hours we were fine.

    It must have been the food from the Koh Chang Seaview Resort as we did not have any breakfast at the hotel that we were staying at.

    The local pharmacy who gave us some meds said that food poisoning was very common on Koh Chang from many of the restaurants. She said food that has expired and goes bad never gets thrown away, restaurants just throw in more MSG to bring the food back to life – WTF!

    I cannot comment first hand on the hotel accommodation, but if the restaurant food quality is a indicator of the business standards then the reviews this American guy left were probably quite true about the Koh Chang Seaview Resort.

  100. Well it seems like the Koh Chang Sea View has really pooped in their own bed over their actions. Seems like karma has bit them badly over this and it has all ended in tears for these a**holes.

    They now have the first of it’s kind warning label on their Tripadvisor page, seems like Tripadvisor are the ones doing the review on them this time and it’s not a positive one that’s for sure

    As it reads below.

    Message from Tripadvisor:

    “This hotel or individuals associated with this hotel filed criminal charges against a Tripadvisor user in relation to the traveler writing and posting online reviews. The reviewer spent time in jail as a result. Tripadvisor serves its users best when travelers are free to share their opinions and experiences on our platform – both positive and negative. The hotel may have been exercising its legal rights under local law, however, it is our role to inform you so you may take this into consideration when researching your travel plans”

    Ouch ! Now that statement from Tripadvisor can’t be good for business.

  101. I’ve lived in Thailand close to a decade. The service is almost universally horrible. Staff are almost universally rude. Police are stupendously corrupt (they stole my Iphone and then sold it back to me!). Products are just beyond ludicrous they are so badly made and there is NO recourse to go back to the seller for refunds, except for farang-run international retail chains. The reason this horrible situation persists generation after generation is because no one is allowed to name and shame the offenders. We just had an electrical contractor blatantly steal my wife’s Ipad from our home while he was working. WE ARE NOT ALLOWED TO EVEN SPEAK ABOUT WHAT THE GUY DID! That means he will continue to go from job to job, home to home, and no one is allowed to tell anyo0ne what happened. Maybe he’ll steal YOUR TV next. But if there was a way to warn others, as in virtually every country around the world, the guy would be shut down and the country would be a little safer and nicer. Thai laws are beyond insane and that is to the detriment of the Thai people.

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