Thailand to lift quarantine for vaccinated tourists from low-risk countries

PHOTO: Facebook/ประยุทธ์ จันทร์โอชา Prayut Chan-o-cha

From November 1, fully vaccinated tourists from at least 10 “low-risk” countries will be allowed enter Thailand without quarantine. According to a Bangkok Post report, the proposal was confirmed by PM Prayut Chan-o-cha in a televised address last night.

“The time has come for us to ready ourselves to face the coronavirus and live with it as with other endemic infections and diseases, much as we have learnt to live with other diseases with treatments and vaccinations. Today, I would like to announce the first small but important step in decisively beginning the process of trying to restore our livelihoods.”

The PM says he has asked the Public Health Ministry and the CCSA to consider allowing fully vaccinated tourists to enter Thailand without quarantine from November 1. Although nothing has been written in stone yet, CCSA meetings are chaired by the PM, meaning the approval request is likely to be a formality.

Vaccinated arrivals would still need to have a negative PCR test before departure from their home countries and would need to submit to a second PCR test on arrival in the kingdom. Once they receive a negative result, they would be free to travel wherever they like. The list of 10 “approved” countries includes the UK, the US, Singapore, China, and Germany. The other 5 are not yet known and are expected to be confirmed after the CCSA meets on Thursday.

The PM says the list of countries will be expanded from December 1 and again from January 1. Arrivals from countries not on the list will still have to quarantine, even if vaccinated. It is not yet known if other entry restrictions – such as the Certificate of Entry and the need for sandbox arrivals to stay in a SHA Plus hotel – will be lifted.

The PM has also confirmed that the ban on serving alcohol in restaurants is likely to be lifted from December 1, adding that bars and nightlife venues could re-open then. In his address, he recognised the risks associated with the move, adding that there is a need to manage the potential risk in Covid-19 cases, while ensuring people whose livelihoods depend on tourism don’t miss a second high season.

“I know this decision comes with some risk. It is almost certain that we will see a temporary rise in serious cases as we relax these restrictions. We will have to track the situation very carefully, and see how to contain and live with that situation because I do not think that the many millions who depend on the income generated by the travel, leisure, and entertainment sector can possibly afford the devastating blow of a second lost New Year holiday period.”

For more information on how to get into Thailand during the pandemic, CLICK HERE.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Maya Taylor

A seasoned writer, with a degree in Creative Writing. Over ten years' experience in producing blog and magazine articles, news reports and website content.

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