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Thailand considering vaccine passport policy in bid to revive international tourism



PHOTO: Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Thailand’s Tourism Minister, Pipat Ratchakitprakarn, says he has asked the Public Health Ministry to approve a vaccine passport scheme aimed at reviving the devastated tourism sector. According to Pipat, the government is looking to the World Health Organisation to issue a statement on vaccine passports before it makes a decision on the matter.

The Tourism Minister adds that having a scheme in place that would allow foreign visitors to bypass quarantine could lead to 5 million tourists arriving in the Kingdom this year. Nation Thailand reports that the government’s Covid-19 task force is also considering allowing quarantining tourists to leave their rooms after 3 days of self-isolation. Pipat predicts that the Russians could be first to return, with tour agents in Russia saying demand is high enough to support regular flights of between 300 and 400 passengers.

The ministry also hopes to deliver Covid-19 vaccines to the 5 major tourism provinces of Phuket, Surat Thani, Chon Buri, Chiang Mai and Krabi. The vaccines would be given to employees at alternative quarantine hotels. It’s understood there are currently 58 alternative quarantine facilities across the 5 provinces, with over 6,700 rooms and 13,000 employees.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand


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  1. Mike

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 11:17 am

    There will be no vaccine passports, it would be discrimination against the people who can not take vaccine because of medical or any other reasons ….. how don’t they think of that before talking about vaccine passport .

    • L-Dogg

      Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 7:20 am

      Because the 5 million other people that are able to be vaccinated can come visit if they want. Do you think the government cares about the 10 people out of 1 million that can’t come because they can’t get the vaccine due to health reasons? Don’t think that is realistic. I already have my passport approved from the IATA, and I’m ready to go. The vaccine passports are going to happen I would put a good chunk of money on that.

  2. EdwardV

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 11:23 am

    No doubt the three days is to make sure they get an arrival test result prior to release. Figure a pre flight test too. Three days seems a bit much since you really only need two. What are the chances it turns into four? Three days is probably too many for the Chinese since they only come for 6-7 days. Might not matter as it’s iffy at best the Chinese government will let them out this year anyway. Three days quarantine is tough for the two week tourist, that’s some 20% of your vacation. Especially since it’s likely a good portion of Europe will open by summer and they won’t require a quarantine. I’d think you need at least a 3-4 week vacation to make it worth it.

  3. Vim

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 11:24 am

    In my country, people have started buying and building summer cottages/houses by a lake, especially the traveler type. They have also invested heavily in renovating their homes. Interesting to see if this curbs the will / want or the budget to travel, or if everything is back to normal on the large scale.

    I like this ASQ thing more, keeps people from traveling and saves money for domestic consumption. The big losers are travel destinations, but, well, I care for them as much as they care for me.

  4. JD

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 11:30 am

    That’s a very wise statement! Only the abolition of quarantine could reboot tourism and therefore the nationwide connected economy.

  5. Tom

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 12:01 pm

    Scheme, this is always the saying. I know they mean plan but the word scheme has a negative connotation to it, at least to me. But, like all the other plans that have been proposed, I see this one failing as well. Many will not vaccinate like myself and I believe many Thais will not. Quarantine has kept the tourists away , a failing scheme why embark on another one. I and my Thai family will be glad when these schemings come to and end.

  6. Hans Eriksson

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 12:06 pm

    We not want to come back to Thailand if the gouverment not give vaccine to all the people.
    Do they think we want to risk get the virus back to EU again.
    At least 1 more year until im back again.

  7. Robert

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 2:28 pm

    In phase one of the ‘opening to tourists’, I would like to see not only an incoming vaccine requirement for the tourists but also a ‘sectional’ or ‘modular’ safety ZONE for them wherein all Thai are also vaccinated. Phuket or another island would be easy to control this way, but other areas would need some modification for how to administer the borders, not so much for the tourists, but for the Thai who work and/or live in that area. And for farang (tourists or residents) in this area a visible wristband (such as at an amusement park) would be helpful to assure the Thai that they are safe and have passed the safety requirements. Freedom to roam, have fun, relax, party, etc. WITHIN the zone is dependent on the secure borders of those zones. At some point (early 2022?) when all Thai are vaccinated (who want to be) then the special zones would not be necessary.

  8. Ian

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 2:31 pm

    At last they may do something but I do say may if not they will be back of the que again like with the vaccine hand out

  9. Issan John

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 2:32 pm

    If foreign tourists can stop “self-isolation” after “just three days” then you really don’t need to be Einstein to see that it then ceases to be a “14-day quarantine” but becomes “just three days” quarantine.

  10. Russian

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 2:50 pm

    Russians don’t want to take the vaccine. They won’t come.

  11. Frank

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 5:29 pm

    Yeah first Russian arrive and see it is a dead man’s land… will be mentioned at home and people stop coming.. all these hope of 5 million people coming is a dream.. who wants to be in a dead town with everything closed??? They should stop creating false hope trying to keep the last places open that are suffering

  12. D-Boy

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 7:27 pm

    This is needed immediately if not sooner!

  13. LondonAl

    Tuesday, March 2, 2021 at 10:21 pm

    Hmm, a 3 day quarantine, now that’s worth some consideration provided it’s at my hotel and not a designated hellhole in Bangkok

  14. Boris

    Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 7:34 am

    It’s quite a simple answer anyone who has been vaccinated can enter it is as easy as 1-2-3

  15. Graham Walker

    Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 8:23 am

    Does the Thai government seriously think they will get tourists to come when all (or most) or most of the tourist attractions are closed and have been for almost 1 year (do they think these will be reopened overnight) ?
    They need to get out of their ivory tower’s and just open their eyes to what they have done to Thailand.

  16. Dreqo

    Wednesday, March 3, 2021 at 11:44 am

    Keep dreaming. One has to wonder when reality will finally soak into the cranial Rambutan.

  17. Boris

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 1:01 am

    If Russians don’t want to take the vaccine that’s upto them but no entry to Thailand simple… they obviously don’t believe in corrupt Putin the dictator. Russians won’t be missed anyway especially their miserable faces. When have you ever seen a Russian smile?? Answer never.

  18. TOny

    Thursday, March 4, 2021 at 7:25 pm

    Russians are not welcome…they spend little money, and are generally objectionable and miserable.

  19. BangkokBen

    Friday, March 5, 2021 at 12:33 am

    If Thailand waits to long to get rid of the quarantine, all the hotels, bars, and other tourist infrastructure will be out of business. Then who is going to come if there is nothing there for them?

  20. daniel verex

    Saturday, March 6, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    I find it astonishing there appears no singular plan to provide ‘passport style evidence’ of covid 19 vaccine. All very well suggesting ‘lets get a vaccine passport system’ but there has to be one that is accepted by all countries. I still cant see the USA accepting a passport with either Chinese or Russian vaccine etc etc….

    As for a passport being discrimatory, absolute rubbish. Does that mean that people who chose not to have a national passport are being discriminated because they cant travel. Bleeding heart liberals need to have an injection of common sense…

  21. Paul gibson

    Monday, March 8, 2021 at 4:49 pm

    If they think people are going to come with only 5 province u can stay and cannot fly in to the main airport plus the fit to fly the covid19 insurance and a covid19 test 72 before plus the visa so if u look at the over all cost £300 for insurance £190 for lab test fit to fly £160 to fly visa £190 I doubt if anybody would pay at u have to be a total numpty to pay them cost at without flights at a cost of nearly £800 at not including flight so if u was coming with your wife or a family of 4 u be looking at thousands

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