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Koh Samui

Samui re-opening plans under threat as island infections rise

Maya Taylor

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PHOTO: Flickr

Koh Samui’s re-opening plan, Samui Plus, may be cancelled if the Covid-19 situation worsens in the next 2 weeks. Yuthasak Supasorn from the Tourism Authority of Thailand says for now, the re-opening is still on, although a recently approved plan to allow participants in the Phuket sandbox to visit Samui and other islands after 7 days on Phuket has been scrapped. The Samui Plus model also dictates that if over 20 Covid cases are recorded in the next 2 weeks, tourists will be required to stay in quarantine facilities.

According to a Bangkok Post report, Ratchaporn Poolsawadee from the Tourism Association of Koh Samui says infections on the island are not currently severe, but hospital beds must be made ready in the event that this changes. For people with mild symptoms, a number of the island’s hotels are converting to “hospitel” status and have over 200 beds available.

Ratchaporn adds that should the situation worsen, with hospital cases reaching 40 in the next 2 weeks, tougher restrictions will have to be introduced and the Samui Plus programme could be cancelled. However, he adds that for now, most new cases are local and not linked to foreign tourists.

“The plan is still to re-open because most new cases were locals, not foreign travellers.”

Meanwhile, the search is underway for people who attended the Black Bamboo Club or the Speedy Lounge & Bar on Lamai beach, with both venues linked to Covid-19 patients. The authorities have also confirmed that businesses that violate Covid-19 restrictions face prosecution.

The island has also introduced tough measures for domestic arrivals from the dark red and red provinces, where infection rates are highest. These include requiring a negative Covid-19 test result no older than 72 hours, including for those who have been vaccinated.

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

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

 

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