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There is no date for the reopening of general tourism in Thailand, except Phuket

Tanutam Thawan

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Deputy government spokesperson Traisulee Traisoranakul says Thailand will not be “fully reopened to foreign tourists” along the lines of Phuket’s “safe and sealed” model, because the government and CCSA has to consider too many details. Thailand’s largest island, Phuket, is going to be a pilot program for the partial re-opening to any tourist that wants to visit – but with plenty of conditions and restrictions.

The spokesperson added that the government must consider many factors “…including guidelines, screening processes and measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19”.

“Phuket residents and Thai tourists can rest assured that no steps to reopen the country have been taken and that utmost precaution will be taken when borders are reopened”, she said in Nation Thailand.

For the Phuket pilot program, tourists (assuming they can find a flight to the island) will arrive at the Phuket International Airport, and then travel to their accommodation (a hotel that has been registered and approved by the Thai government) for 14 day quarantine. They will be restricted to a 1 kilometre radius of the hotel, according to the early announcements about the program. After the 2 weeks in their 1-kilometre-radius quarantine, the guests will be free to roam around Phuket, and then beyond if they choose after another 7 days. The early conditions also stipulated a minimum stay of 30 days and that entry will also only be limited to tourists from risk-free countries (whatever that means).

The program was meant to start on October 1 although there has been no firm announcement made where the full details have been laid out. As recent history has shown, early proposals sometimes don’t pan out into fully detailed announcements.

There had been speculation in foreign media this week that the “Phuket Model” was a blueprint for the re-introduction fo tourism across all of Thailand. That information was incorrect.

Thai Airways have also announced this week that they’ll re-introduce flights in November. The charter flights will fly direct from Denmark, Germany, England, South Korea, Japan and Hong Kong to Phuket International Airport. Thai Airways is set to start the flights by the “end of November”, according to their Wednesday announcement, although the start of the Safe & Sealed campaign in Phuket is meant to start on October 1.

No other airlines have made general announcements about the reintroduction of flights back into Phuket, although many of the domestic airlines have international offshoots that would be able to “ramp up” quite quickly as they’ve already been flying domestically for the past 2 months.

Meanwhile, the next two categories of foreigner to be able to re-enter Thailand, is now being considered by the CCSA. This time, foreigners with permanent residences, who have been stranded overseas for the past 6 months, and long-term foreign residents (retirement visa), will receive priority.

The chairman of the CCSA’s panel, who oversee the easing of Covid-19 restrictions, announced that they will recommend these two groups of foreigners to be allowed back into Thailand “as they have high purchasing power”.

Both groups would still have to undergo the mandatory state-controlled 14 day quarantine. It’s under the quarantine that so many Thai repatriates have been found to have Covid-19 during the series of tests they undergo.

There has been no official date announced.

HERE‘s our daily update of FAQs for returning to Thailand.

 

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16 Comments

16 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Preesy Chepuce

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 10:32 am

    They have to scrap this 14 day rule for the Phuket plan to work. Test and trace at each end is enough. Just make Phuket a quarantine island, like a reception for people to travel onwards to other quarantined tourist sites like Samui.

  2. Avatar

    Eddie

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 10:39 am

    This kind of plan is never gonna work… minimum 30 days? I wonder how many people have 30 days of holiday per year. And around the globe many countries are reopening for tourism, Thailand WILL NOT be considered anymore and Thais will suffer…

    • Avatar

      R

      Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 11:38 am

      Thai residents can’t afford 2nd lockdown just to please tourists!!!
      Why Do Thai residents have to be put at risk for Covid infected?

      Obviously you’re not thai!

      • Avatar

        Nipral

        Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 11:59 am

        @R : You are probably Thai which explains how narrow your perspective is !
        Your country will die as your only resource is tourism should you like it or not.
        Tourists have a wealth of alternatives to choose from, you dont have any
        but tourism.
        Take the exemple of Greece. Smart and utterly successful re-opening this summer
        with very few restrictions and almost no constraints.

      • Avatar

        Preesy Chepuce

        Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 12:22 pm

        Thai health system can’t afford a collapsed economy and rioting and crime caused by needlessly closed down tourism economy. Risk to Thai residents is minimal of tested tourists returning to one island.

      • Avatar

        Bobby m

        Sunday, August 30, 2020 at 1:13 pm

        You are obviously either supported by western money or in a well paid secure job. Millions are not and are starving

  3. Avatar

    Nipral

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 11:52 am

    The Thai government should have learned that the “high end” tourists they aim at
    hardly spend more than 4-5 nights at the same place. The “long term ” tourists are
    back packers, retired or jobless people. Thailand needs them too but luxury hotels
    and retailers, restaurants, yacht rentals, airlines, airports, real estate industry
    need more and so do their hundreds thousands employees who are starving at present.
    In any case either they open with no or few restrictions now or they die. Very simple !
    Also they could be inspired by some utterly successful re-openings like Greece, another country heavily relying on tourism.
    relying on tourism.

    • Avatar

      Preesy Chepuce

      Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 12:24 pm

      Not just Greece, Spain and Portugal too.
      Most Mediterranean and southern countries benefit from tourism.

    • Avatar

      Annie

      Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 9:15 pm

      Who do they think will come?
      They want our money and yet they want to treat us like criminals!
      I am from Sweden and I can tell that this corona-19 threat is extremely blown out of proportion. The only ones who are in any danger is the ones that normally, of obvious reasons, can’t handle a normal flu. We are all going abroad our byssies as usual.
      Me and my husband were going to Thailand on holiday, as usual this November. But we will definitely under no circumstances let us be so humiliated.
      It’s really sad that the Thai government let the low income natives suffer. No jobs, no income…
      My hart bleed for the Thai people.

  4. Avatar

    Graham Walker

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 2:36 pm

    Yeah sounnds like a prison holiday, if you can actually get to the island on a direct flight ??
    I noted that retirees are now on the list to be able to come to Thailand, not a big help for me now that my visa has expired, guess I might get to stay in my house sometime 2021 ?

  5. Avatar

    Perceville Smithers

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 5:12 pm

    Unless it’s to see loved ones or handle business affairs, why would anyone pay large sums to be subjected to restrictions and conditions and wander the streets of a ghost town? I would not spend more money to get less in return.

  6. Avatar

    james

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 8:08 pm

    Spain, Greece etc opened their doors to tourism and now the number of virus cases has doubled and those countries are now included in the list of countries where tourists then have to stay isolated at home for two weeks when returning to their own counties.

    A few weeks ago I drove from Kathu to Patong, onto Karon and Kata Beach, then up to the viewpoint.

    I drove a circle of 45kms and everything is like a ghost town, after seven months in Phuket I am now back in the UK.

    All the hotel workers etc in Phuket have returned home to their own areas in Thailand, the locals who work in Phuket Town, etc do not want people from overseas infecting them until an inoculation drug is working.

    Why should people in Phuket be put at risk?

  7. Avatar

    TJ

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 9:05 pm

    If all the anxiety and doomsaying in this and threads like it are any indication, Thailand will have no shortage of people banging on the gates demanding to be let in right up to the day they open.

    I feel like a lot of the folks who don’t want foreigners in are the older people who don’t rely on the tourist economy for subsistence, especially those who feel Phuket has been the most recent Thai victim of overtourism. Most folks in their 20s-40s are struggling, have tuition bills the Thai government won’t subsidize, and would like to see a return of foreign money into the LOS.

  8. Avatar

    Mongoose

    Saturday, August 29, 2020 at 9:24 pm

    Yes another clueless idear by a government with there head in the clouds

  9. Avatar

    ราตรี สุวรรณเกตุ

    Sunday, August 30, 2020 at 10:22 am

    อ่านดูแล้วเหมือนประเทศไทยศิวิไลมากมีแต่นักท่องเที่ยวอยากเข้ามา แต่สำหรับฉันแล้วคิดว่าถ้าประเทศไม่เปิดและมีข้อจำกัดมากมาย นักท่องเที่ยวหายไปประเทศอื่นแน่นอน.

    • Avatar

      Byron Sterling

      Monday, August 31, 2020 at 11:27 pm

      ประเทศไทยจะขอให้นักท่องเที่ยวเดินทางกลับ แต่อาจจะต้องตรวจสอบให้แน่ใจว่าได้อำนวยความสะดวกในการดำเนินการเกี่ยวกับวีซ่าที่ยุ่งยากและราคาแพงเกินไปสำหรับนักท่องเที่ยวที่อยู่เป็นเวลานาน นอกจากนี้ยังใช้กับนักท่องเที่ยวที่เรียกว่ารวยเป็นที่ต้องการอย่างมาก ถึงเวลาเปลี่ยนการตั้งค่าสยาม ชาม!

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