“Test run” at Bangkok airport to prepare for next week’s reopening

Covid-19 screening at Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport (October 2021) | Photo courtesy of PR Bangkok

Staff at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport have been gearing up for Thailand’s much-anticipated reopening, conducting a test run of electronic screening measures rolled out ahead of the staged return of tourism to the country. Thailand is poised to open its doors to vaccinated visitors from eligible countries and territories from November 1, allowing quarantine-free entry subject to a number of conditions.

As reported by Reuters, airport staff, along with health and immigration officials, ran a simulation of the arrival of a plane full of visitors, putting the screening measures through their paces. Airport general manager Kittipong Kittikachorn said all passengers will have their QR code checked by the Department of Disease control, with it to “include all the details about insurance, vaccine certificate, or hotel booking”.

The Thai government last week released a list of 46 countries and territories approved to take part in Thailand’s reopening. Travellers keen to take advantage of quarantine-free entry will need to follow a number of conditions, including providing proof of vaccination with 2 doses of a recognised Covid-19 vaccine and having a negative PCR test result within 72 hours of departure from their home country. A detailed rundown of the conditions can be found here.

As reported by Reuters, the post-Covid drop in tourism in Thailand has been stark, with authorities this year targeting just 100,000 arrivals, as opposed to nearly 40 million in 2019. Pointing to Thailand’s initiatives to get tourism back up and running, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha earlier this week stressed the importance of ASEAN reopening, stating the region should be weighing up steps to allow for safe travel to revive its economies.

SOURCE: Reuters

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