24 May 2024

The Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) meeting today (Friday) chaired by Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, has resolved to specify requirements for fully vaccinated foreign tourists to enter the kingdom without a quarantine requirement from July 1st under the highly-anticipated “Phuket Sandbox” tourism scheme.

The proposed requirements – to be approved by the Cabinet – are as followed:

  • Foreign tourists wishing to travel to Phuket must be fully vaccinated for more than 14 days but no more than one year. They must be from low and medium risk countries, according to the Public Health Ministry’s listings.
  • Children aged under 6 can enter with their fully vaccinated parents. Those aged 6-18 are required to undergo a COVID-19 test on arrival.
  • The tourist must present a vaccination certificate from their departing countries. The vaccine must be approved by Thailand’s Food and Drug Administration (Sinovac, Sinopharm, AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson, Moderna) or approved for emergency use by the World Health Organization (WHO) (BioNTech-Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, Sinopharm, Sinovac)
  • Install an application for the local authorities to track health conditions
  • Stay in hotels certified by Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration (SHA+) for 14 nights, after which travel to other parts of Thailand will be allowed
  • Update their health on the app and undergo further COVID-19 tests as required by the Public Health Ministry. Tourist activities under DMHTTA (Distancing, Mask wearing, Hand washing, Temperature, Testing, Application) are recommended.

The plan aims to attract tourists from Europe and the United States first, with the target of welcoming 129,000 tourists. As for tourists from nearby countries, the reopening will depend on each country’s vaccination and travel policy and the Tourism Authority of Thailand will review the situation monthly.

Bangkok, Krabi, Phang Nga, Surat Thani, Chiang Mai, Chonburi, Buriram, Phetchaburi and Prachuap Khiri Khan, are scheduled to welcome tourists in October, all following the Phuket Sandbox model.

During the recent parliamentary debate on the budget Bill, Minister of Tourism and Sports Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said that he is confident that 70% of the people in the 10 provinces will be inoculated this month.

The ministry also plans to launch the “Tour Tiew Thai” project, to boost the domestic tourism sector and to encourage people to travel during weekdays. It is expected to generate revenues of up to 61 billion baht, along with existing schemes, such as “Rao Tiew Duay Kan” (We Travel Together) and the “Kam Lang Jai” scheme.

Meanwhile, seven airlines will resume direct flights to and from Phuket early next month, namely Thai Airways, Emirates, Singapore Airlines, Qatar Airways, El Al, British Airways, and Air France.