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Phuket prepares to welcome first Chinese tourists in over 6 months

Maya Taylor



PHOTO: Jing Daily

The first group of tourists to arrive under Thailand’s new Special Tourist Visa scheme are expected to land in Phuket on October 8. The Bangkok Post reports that a flight from Guangzhou in southern China will carry 120 tourists, who will spend their first 14 days in alternative state quarantine. They are reported to be travelling under the government’s new STV.

Arrivals who do not pass the initial health screening will be transferred to specially chosen hospitals, as “Patients under Investigation”. Those who do pass the screening will be transported to alternative state quarantine once they’ve gone through immigration processing.

A Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration spokesperson says the resort islands of Phuket and Koh Samui will be the first to welcome travellers under the Special Tourist Via scheme. He pointed out that Guangzhou has not recorded any new cases of the Covid-19 virus for a prolonged period, meaning next week’s tourist arrivals are deemed “low risk”. His assertion is confirmed from the official figures at website recording world Covid-19 cases.

The CCSA reports that there will be a limit of 300 foreign tourists admitted each week, but this will be reviewed after the first phase of the re-opening. All arrivals will be subject to 14 day quarantine, although the Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn has suggested reducing this to 7 days eventually. The CCSA says they are not considering reducing the quarantine time at this stage.

Thiravat Hemachudha from the Thai Red Cross Emerging Infectious Disease Health Science Centre is not opposed to the idea.

“We can study this with foreign visitors who will arrive next month. During the 14 day quarantine they will be tested on the first, the seventh and the fourteenth day. If they are free of infections, we can shorten the quarantine to 7 days.”

However, not all are in agreement, with a doctor from Bangkok’s Chulalongkorn University cautioning against any shortening of the quarantine period.

Meanwhile, Phuket governor, Narong Woonsiew, says the province is ready to welcome the new arrivals, with Covid-19 labs in place at Phuket airport, and officials due to carry out a full dress rehearsal today.

Thanit Sermkaew, chief of the Phuket Public Health Office, says over 1,200 rooms at 9 hotels have been chosen as alternative state quarantine properties, with a total of 73 hotels, providing over 5,800 rooms, applying for consideration.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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  1. Avatar


    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 10:01 am

    why from china? low risk.. ok. well who cares if its low risk if they have to quarantine and have insurance. why does it have to be ‘low risk’ countries…

  2. Avatar

    Toby Andrews

    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 11:32 am

    Now go to your room Wong and don’t come out until we say.

  3. Avatar


    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 12:12 pm

    The big rush is starting…time to reopen hotels and discos to welcome these 10000000000000000…… of tourists !

  4. Avatar


    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 1:16 pm

    Will not be going to Thailand so long as Chinese are permitted. Thai people have sold their souls

  5. Avatar


    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 1:53 pm

    From what I hear, China is not letting citizens travel abroad yet. If this is true, then these “tourists” are not actually tourists but more like investors or liquidators looking to take advantage of struggling businesses in Phuket. Logically speaking, if they were real tourists then the number would not be 120 as I’m sure authorities can handle more than that at one time. It’s obvious that Prayut had planned this all along. Part of the kiss China’s ass scheme, led by the Junta himself.

    • Avatar

      Rinky Stingpiece

      Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 1:58 pm

      I have heard people say these are not real tourists, but supported by the Chinese government.

    • Avatar


      Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 3:18 pm

      actually make sense, i was wondering how can Chinese tourist who usually have less than two weeks holydays are interested in spending 2 weeks in jail quarantine, because they are not tourists, but deep pockets investors, i guess both sides sellers and investors will be surprised when they meet, thai thinking that their business still hold some form of value and Chinese who might offer 10 % of the former price to them, both side might end up disappointed

  6. Avatar


    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 3:06 pm

    So a two week holiday has to be extended to four weeks to allow quarantine. This has to be a joke.

  7. Avatar

    Malcolm R.

    Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 3:41 pm

    Hahahaha — ready to carry out ‘a dress rehearsal’. 🙂

    It’s a virus that is now being proven to kill fewer than .75% of people that contract it, and those mainly the elderly with pre-existing conditions who would have probably died in a few months anyway.

    Meanwhile, the Thai economy is collapsing and the government are ordering ‘dress rehearsals’ for 120 Chinese tourists who will spend very little money when they even get to Phuket. Meanwhile, the other 40 million tourists are still banned.

    That the Thai government is panic-stricken beyond believe is pretty evident. That they are also complicit in ruining Thailand’s economic future for at least the next 10 years will also become quite evident to most Thais sooner than later.

    Meanwhile, enjoying the laugh if nothing else 🙂 You couldn’t make this stuff up.

    • Avatar

      Jase Reid

      Wednesday, September 30, 2020 at 4:57 pm

      Agreed. I feel sorry for the next PM to take odffice. What a sorry state of a country this poor fella will be facing.

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