Koh Samui eyes European tourists following cancellation of Test & Go

PHOTO: Pixabay/Terry Bouris

Samui is eyeing European tourists after the Thai government confirmed the Test & Go entry program is being ditched from the end of April. On Koh Samui, the Tourism Authority of Thailand has met with local tourism associations, as well as over 30 leading European travel agencies. The get-together was to showcase several tourism attractions, activities, and hotels on the Gulf island, in the hope of seeing an increase in overseas visitors from next month.

According to a Pattaya News report, the TAT’s director for Europe, Africa, and the Middle East believes foreign tourists will find travel to Thailand much more convenient now the requirement for PCR testing on arrival is being lifted for fully vaccinated travellers.

Thitiporn Maneenet says the TAT will check flight and hotel bookings for the coming months, which will be the summer holiday period in Europe. He believes Samui has the potential to attract visitors from the European market through the promotion of its health and wellness offering.

“The easing of requirements for entering the country in May would make it more convenient for tourists. There was a good response from tourists too after the announcement on Friday. It was a perfect time to introduce and bring tourism promotion activities back into the area of Koh Samui.”

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However Bangkok Airways largely runs a monopoly on flights into Samui, making the travel to the island more expensive than to other islands in Thailand. Most airline travellers to Samui will have to transit through Bangkok and catch a Bangkok Airways flight.

Last week, the CCSA confirmed that from May 1, Thailand will lift the requirement for fully vaccinated travellers to undergo PCR testing either before travel or on arrival. This means there is also no longer a need for a first night stay at a SHA+ hotel. (Unvaccinated travellers can also come to Thailand under the revised Thailand Pass from May 1 if they undergo a PCR test in the 72 hours before they travel. If the test is negative they will be able to avoid the 5 day quarantine at a Alternative Quarantine hotel)

However, for now, the Thailand Pass registration process remains, as does the requirement for Covid-19 insurance, although mandatory coverage has been reduced to US$10,000.

Registration for the revised Thailand Pass will be available after 1 minute past midnight on April 29.

SOURCE: The Pattaya News

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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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