After months of strict travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Thailand is gearing up for a return to normalcy by easing some travel restrictions and quarantine requirements and allowing normal tourists to enter the country.
The government has introduced Sandbox programs allowing vaccinated travelers to enter the ‘Land of Smiles’ without quarantine.
Thailand will waive its mandatory quarantine requirement in Bangkok and nine regions from 1 November to vaccinated arrivals, authorities announced recently.
The ‘Phuket Sandbox’ program has welcomed over 35,000 travelers since it started on July 1, 2021. Fully vaccinated travelers from eligible countries who are visiting Thailand through the Phuket Sandbox are not required to undergo a mandatory quarantine.
The Phuket Sandbox travelers are required to stay for seven nights in a designated SHA+ hotel in Phuket only. The ‘Samui Plus Sandbox’ program has welcomed international travelers since it started on 15 July 2021.
Fully vaccinated travelers visiting Thailand through the Samui Plus Sandbox are not required to undergo a mandatory quarantine.
Samui Plus Sandbox travelers are required to stay for 7 nights in a designated Samui Extra Plus Hotel in Samui before they are allowed to travel to Koh Phang Ngan or Koh Tao.
“The Thai government’s aim is to allow all vaccinated crew/guests to fly into Thailand without the need for Quarantine,” reports Gordon Fernandes in Phuket, co-founder of Asia Pacific Superyachts.
“Yacht check-in is also scheduled to get easier,” he adds.
The Thai government plans to promote tourism next year and set up of a tourism promotional fund to transform Phuket into a world-class destination.
Restrictions were eased as vaccinations hit 50m doses after record 1.4 million doses last week.
The ambitious plan for Phuket and the tourism sector was approved during an online meeting today (Thursday) of the Centre for Economic Situation Administration, chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.
A tourism promotion fund, with the support of the private sector and civil society, will be set up, not just to promote tourism but also to effect changes in the tourism industry for sustainable growth, as well as reducing as much red tape as possible to promote tourism and welcome more foreign-flagged yachts and superyachts.
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