Strict requirements set for visitors ahead of Phuket “Sandbox” reopening on July 1

Empty tourist boats anchor off Rawai Beach on Phuket, southern Thailand, Monday, June 28, 2021. Thailand’s government has begun the “Phuket Sandbox” scheme to bring the tourists back to Phuket starting July 1. Even though coronavirus numbers are again rising around the rest of Thailand and prompting new lockdown measures, officials say there’s too much at stake not to forge ahead with the plan to reopen the island to fully-vaccinated travelers. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)

The Thai government has finalised requirements for the entry of fully vaccinated foreign tourists and Thai returnees, without entering quarantine, through the Phuket “sandbox” project, which starts tomorrow (Thursday).

According to an announcement published in the Royal Gazette yesterday (Tuesday), the requirements are:

  • Avoid high COVID-19 risk and communal areas for 14 days prior to arrival.
  • Come from a list of permitted countries/territories and have stayed there for at least 21 days before arrival, with the exception of those who are returning, having departed from Thailand to one of the permitted countries. Up to 63 countries and 3 territories deemed at low to medium risk of COVID-19 spread are on the permitted list. These include US, UK, Australia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam, Israel and Qatar among others, according to foreign ministry spokesperson Tanee Sangrat.
  • Register themselves upon arrival on
  • Present a Certificate of Entry (COE). Registration is available at Application should not be placed more than 30 days prior to arrival.
  • Present a medical certificate, issued no more than 72 hours before departure, indicating the result of a laboratory RT-PCR test, showing that COVID-19 was not detected.
  • Present travel insurance, with health and COVID-19 coverage for the entire stay in Thailand, worth at least 100,000 US Dollars.
  • Present evidence of a SHA+ hotel pre-paid booking for at least 14 days and return flight tickets for those who stay in Thailand fewer than 14 days.
  • Present Certificate of Vaccination with two full doses (or one dose of Johnson & Johnson vaccine) issued no less than 14 days before departure. The vaccines must be approved by Thailand’s Food and Drug Administration and/or the World Health Organization for emergency use. A COVID-19 negative medical certificate, issued no more than 72 hours prior to departure, is required for non-vaccinated minors aged under 18.
  • Stay on the island for at least 14 days before being allowed to travel elsewhere in the country. Those staying in Thailand for fewer than 14 days are not allowed to travel elsewhere within Thailand.
  • Install a Thai government location tracking app upon arrival. An RT-PCR test, paid for by the traveller, will be conducted upon arrival at a designated site. A direct commute from the airport to the hotel is mandated and no travel outside the hotel is allowed until a negative COVID-19 result is issued.
  • In case of a stay in Thailand for no more than 7 days, a second RT-PCR test will be conducted on either the 6th or 7th  day. In case of a stay in Thailand for 10-14 days, a second test is required on either the 6th or 7th day, with the third test to be conducted on either the 12th or 13th. Another test may be required upon departing the first destination, depending on the next destination’s requirements. All test-related expenses are to be paid by the travellers.
  • To travel elsewhere in Thailand, evidence of an SHA+ hotel stay at the first destination and a negative RT-PCR test are to be presented.
  • People testing negative for COVID-19 upon arrival are required to return to the booked hotel every day.


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