In all the debate and commentary on the 300 baht per day minimum wage, several key factors have been consistently overlooked. I will take Koh Samui as an example, but sources in other coastal tourist areas tell me much the same story. Most Thais in these places work in the tourist service industry in hotels, resorts, restaurants, small shops, massage shops and bars. They work as staff, receptionists, cleaners, cooks, cashiers, wait staff, and bartenders, to name but a few occupations.
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These workers, generally speaking, are not offered 300 baht a day since the owners foil any mention of this by saying that the 300 baht rate ''only applies in Bangkok'' or is only for big companies or factories. An employee who pushes the issue will quickly be out of a job.
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