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Phuket may open to international tourists on October 1 – with conditions attached

Maya Taylor



PHOTO: William Rouse on Unsplash

The Thai PM, Prayut Chan-o-cha, agrees in principle that international tourists can return to Phuket from October 1. However, in what will come as no surprise, there are conditions attached. Under the Safe and Sealed plan, Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn proposes opening a total of 6 regions to international tourists, who will need to undergo a 14 day quarantine period in dedicated areas.

“There is no need to come with a tour group. Individual travellers can visit some provinces, but they have to abide by strict screening rules, as were other groups that were previously allowed. Different hotels that share the same beach within a one-kilometre radius can group together as a sealed zone. This plan will allow tourists beach activities.”

Once they’ve completed their 14 day quarantine period, international visitors will be free to travel around Phuket. However, if they want to travel beyond the province, that will involve another 7 days’ quarantine. A report in the Bangkok Post says all hotel staff will need to stay within the sealed zones. If they do need to travel outside their area, they will need to be tested for Covid-19 and also undergo 14 days’ quarantine.

Phiphat says that while tourists’ movement by air and land is easier to control, he is concerned about sea transport, pointing out that some may use this to violate quarantine requirements. On September 5 and 6, the Transport Minister, along with representatives from the Tourism and Sports, Public Health and Interior ministries, will visit Phuket to examine transport links between the provinces of Phuket, Krabi and Phang Nga, with a view to closing potential loopholes.

It’s understood public hearings for other provinces are in the pipeline.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post


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  1. Avatar


    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 10:30 am

    All you need to do now is find a hotel that’s open and one you can afford that isn’t fleecing tourists, find a flight and one you can afford, save up the money, get the time off work (if you have a job) get travel insurance and find somewhere in one of the zones that has some life, other people and restaurants and bars that are open (and not fleecing tourists)


  2. Avatar


    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 11:36 am

    Makes life very easy travelling back to thailand. Very very easy

  3. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 11:48 am

    Oh I can hardly wait!
    To see what a disastrous flop this latest great deal offered to foreigners is.
    The Thais just do not get it.
    The deal is ridiculously bad and nobody will go for it. Thailand is not that good . ..

    • Avatar

      Karen Hardman

      Thursday, August 27, 2020 at 5:28 pm

      Thailand is VERY, very good and WAY ahead of the uk in terms of medical care, which is excellent and Covid 19 deaths !!! Only 58, compared to the uk`s ridiculously high number of almost 50,000 !! lf l wanted an ultrasound in the uk, l would first have to make a GP appt, waiting 20 plus minutes on the phone to get through, then days or weeks for the appt, then another couple of months– at least– for the appt, then another couple of weeks to get the results !!!!
      Whereas in Thailand, l see a consultant immediately, have a chat with them, get sent off for the ultrasound and then a couple of hours later get the results, and this is on the SAME DAY !! There is NO comparison between Thailand`s health system and the uk`s, which really is not that great at all !!!

  4. Avatar

    Perceville Smithers

    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 11:59 am

    In another article a few days ago, there was talk about tourists wearing a wristband for tracking. Wonder if that was scrapped or will be sprung upon the vistor when he gets there.

    A 14-day quarantine then another 7-day if I want to visit another province? Don’t think so.

  5. Avatar

    Roger Ward

    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 12:08 pm

    Most europeans get 1month holiday a year so we have a day to get to Thailand 14days stuck in a hotel at 50,000baht+ for 2wks,3000baht to be tested on entry,then we cant travel to another province ie Issan without another 7days,do you really think we are that stupid to want this so called deal.

    • Avatar

      Perceville Smithers

      Saturday, August 22, 2020 at 4:48 am

      Late last year and earlier this year, talking to two different Brits at 2 different bars in Bangkok, both said they felt Thai gov was slowly pushing them out and welcoming another group of touris.

    • Avatar

      Karen Hardman

      Thursday, August 27, 2020 at 5:47 pm

      Best to go next year then, when hopefully this will all be over ! But Thailand is VERY careful about who comes into their country and regulations there are very strictly enforced, which is one of the reasons why they only have 58 deaths from covid compared to the uk`s almost 50,000 !

  6. Avatar


    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 1:07 pm

    Hey and errrrror 8-)))

  7. Avatar

    Ray W.

    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 2:27 pm

    What clown shoes buffoonery this continues to be. Open the damn boarder, accept there is risk that should be left to the individual and the business, and get on with life. We are losing more lives to poverty, crime, depressions, and drugs then we ever would have from COVID. Just look at the global mortality statistics in the last 60 day, not February and March, the last 60 days. We are being insanely draconian and oppressive, unless the goal was to max out the misery index… then I guess a ‘great job is in order.

  8. Avatar

    Chris Stark

    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 3:08 pm

    The government seems to be under delusion that Thailand is doing tourists a favour to imprison them for 14 days at their own expense and confine them to a narrow stretch of beach.Its laughable.

  9. Avatar


    Friday, August 21, 2020 at 3:56 pm

    Why come to Thailand, if all my 30 days on visa exempt are used up during quarantine? Do they actually know their own visa regulation?

    • Avatar


      Monday, August 24, 2020 at 12:10 am

      Very true..and sorry… neither do they know their own visa regulations nor do they have any sense in whatever they do..thats the Thai government…

  10. Avatar


    Saturday, August 22, 2020 at 12:38 am

    But we can only stay in Thailand for 30 days.
    So, in the first 14 days we will have to hang around in the hotel, then in the next 7 days we can go around Phuket, and for the very last week we can go to stay with our GF/wife/children in BKK.
    Then we will have to do a visa run to a nearby country , and restart the whole procedure from the beginning.
    Unless we pay half a million Baht for the Elite visa.

  11. Avatar


    Saturday, August 22, 2020 at 2:52 am

    Guess how many seconds after someone arrives in one of these “zones” they will be offered a boat ride to some other coastal town, and the spreading begins.

    Desperate operators will do whatever it takes to make up for lost income. Will be a clown show no matter what scheme they try come up with.

    The Thai authorities would be better off spending their time and money on economic diversification strategies.

  12. Avatar


    Saturday, August 22, 2020 at 10:26 am

    Can those on retirement visas take advantage of this as a way to visit their home country and return to Thailand. Currently there is no way to do this. Spending 2 weeks in a hotel on return not that bad.

  13. Avatar


    Saturday, August 22, 2020 at 10:42 am

    Does this mean Phuket inhabitants will all be subject to 7 days of quarantine to leave the island (having potentially been in contact with tourists who have completed their 14 days and free to roam around Phuket?)

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