3 Predictions About The Bar Industry’s Future
Thai women no longer owe debts of "Jai" for opportunity to be next best thing to a money machine for a bar. The women know it. Every cell phone in the hand of a Thai woman is the possibility of emancipation from a basically predatory industry. This alone forces the bars to pursue the new barfine and drink scenarios as they've squeezed their women as much as they can. The quota system of drinks and barfines per employee per month has reached the point of diminished returns. After all the women can only do so much if the monger isn't buying.
The generation of mongers is changing quite rapidly. As the dinosaurs die off, the newer generations aren't interested (much) in the status quo. They like to look, and to be blunt, if the bars continue to offer what is often seen in farang bars, they will take one and hit the road, and barfines/drink minimums/door charges be damned. Grandma can keep her ping pong balls and baby belly to herself, thank you very much!
So really the bars have no choice. If they can't squeeze more money out of the girls, it is going to come out of the tourist. These new means of making money will endure, and spread within the next year or two.
I expect door charges to be standard in many mainstream bars quite quickly. It's an easy money grab and will ensure the bar makes a per head on every one including the "looky-loos".
Non-barfineable girls is also a given, I think. Short of firing a girl for making her own arrangements/dates after shop hours, the whole matter is moot (see last paragraph). The bar can mandate a time frame for short time, and mandate a certain location for short times to occur, but if the girl can make the one short time date she needs for profit per night on the walk home, well, the bar is out the base rate for the girl to show up and "dance", and she really doesn't have to make barfines, she can endure the loss of wages that the bars inflict for not meeting that particular quota, and easily. (I wonder if the bar owner that you show pictures of got his ass beat for something along these lines. Thai women as you've shown are not to be fucked with when they get angry. I'm terrified of mine actually.) <The bar boss highlighted for being beaten up by his own staff went through a bad period and word from those close to him is, amazingly, that the beating was deserved – Stick>
Drink minimums may not happen too quickly, but I think they will follow along within a few years, these will be the hardest to put in place as the tourist grapevine will ensure that the places with the best girls will see door charges, but the places with drink minimums will suffer. You can push a buffalo only so far before it digs its heels in.
As long as the exchange rate in Thailand favours the Euro and the US rates, the beast that is the bar industry in Thailand will shamble along.
You know better than I will likely ever that the Thailand bar/sex industry are basically one and the same thing. Have been for almost 40 years and will be for the foreseeable future. We also know that the sex industry service for "Farangs" is a small portion that there is for the local and regional Asian wants. The Farang sector is just the most visible. This will be the status quo until the seating arrangement at the "big people's" table changes. Then I imagine that there will be some serious shake-ups that will make the recent changes of immigration / overstay policies look tame. The recent change of civic government will be a minor hiccup as the "main event" progresses. Actually, Stick, I suspect that the changes could even be because the seating change is imminent. Thais in the sex industry may seems lazy, disingenuous, and deviant, but one thing they are not is stupid.