The holiday destination of Hua Hin, in the western province of Prachuap Khiri Khan, is hoping to launch a mass vaccination programme ahead of its October re-opening. The proposal comes after the National Tourism Policy Committee agreed that popular tourist destinations such as Prachuap Khiri Khan, Phetchaburi, Buriram, and Bangkok would re-open to vaccinated foreign tourists from October 1. A similar plan is already afoot for the southern province of Phuket, with the more ambitious starting date of July 1.
Krod Rojanastien from the Board of Trade of Thailand, who is also president of the Thai Spa Association, says vaccinated foreign arrivals will be exempt from mandatory quarantine and will bring a much-needed boost to Hua Hin businesses struggling to survive the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic. According to a Bangkok Post report, the “Hua Hin Recharge project” seeks to work with the government, public health bodies, and tourism businesses to carry out mass vaccination in Hua Hin. The project also hopes to educate people about the need for vaccination and the benefits of herd immunity.
As part of the plan, Krod is asking the government’s Covid-19 task force to approve an emergency supply of vaccine doses for Hua Hin. He says if granted, mass inoculation could begin as early as next month.
Meanwhile, deputy government spokesperson, Traisuree Taisaranakul, agrees that Prachuap Khiri Khan is a key destination for both foreign and local tourists. She says the Hua Hin project aims to vaccinate at least 70% of the local population, with priority given to those working in tourism, before the October 1 re-opening. She adds that the request for an emergency allocation of vaccines will be submitted to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration this month.
The president of the Hua Hin-Cha Am Tourism Association, Wassana Srikanjana, says Hua Hin has everything in place to ensure vaccines are effectively administered and will work with local hospitals and other medical facilities. She adds that, should the re-opening to vaccinated foreign visitors go ahead as planned, Hua Hin hopes to welcome at least 100,000 foreign arrivals in the last quarter of this year.
SOURCE: Bangkok Post
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