foreign tourists

  • Tourism

    Q3 tourism hopes fade as US advises citizens not to travel to Thailand

    Hopes are fading for a tourism revival in the third quarter of this year after the US government cautioned its citizens against unnecessary travel to Thailand. The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention has added Thailand to its Level 4 countries, the highest-level warning, as a result of the rising Covid-19 infections in the Kingdom. The Bangkok Post reports that…

  • Phuket

    Over 14,000 foreign tourists avail of Phuket sandbox scheme during first month

    The Tourism Authority of Thailand reports that Phuket welcomed over 14,000 foreign tourists, generating an estimated 829 million baht, during the first month of the island’s sandbox scheme. The Phuket sandbox was launched on July 1, allowing vaccinated foreign tourists from low-risk countries to visit the island without quarantine. Participants are required to stay in approved hotels and remain on…

  • Tourism

    Thailand’s foreign tourist numbers expected to plummet during 2021

    Tourism officials have repeated a bleak prediction that international arrivals in Thailand are likely to drop to an all-time low this year. According to a Bangkok Post report, Tourism Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn says foreign visitors to the Kingdom may only number 500,000 this year. “If the ongoing outbreak continues past September, the total number of foreign tourists this year might…

  • Koh Samui

    Samui re-opening plans under threat as island infections rise

    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…

  • Coronavirus Phuket

    Officials reluctant to cancel Phuket sandbox, lifeline for desperate locals

    Officials have confirmed that the Phuket sandbox scheme will not be cancelled, despite rising infections on the island. At least not for now. The Bangkok Post reports that despite the island reporting 40 new infections yesterday, the highest number since it re-opened to foreign tourists, the governor is reluctant to put an end to the financial lifeline for desperate locals.…

  • Tourism

    Hotels hope for increase in foreign tourists to offset slump in domestic demand

    Hotels in Thailand’s normally busy tourist hotspots are hoping that a further re-opening to foreign travellers will offset the drop in domestic demand. The Bangkok Post reports that travel curbs have decimated domestic tourism in places like Phuket, Krabi, and Phang Nga. Kongsak Khoopongsakorn from the Thai Hotels Association says the Phuket sandbox scheme welcomed around 10,000 tourists in its…

  • Koh Samui

    Koh Samui opens for bookings from vaccinated foreign tourists

    Koh Samui’s sealed route programme, Samui Plus, has opened for business, with vaccinated tourists now able to apply for a certificate of entry. Ratchaporn Poolsawadee from the Tourism Association of Koh Samui says some details need to be ironed out, including determing the cost of a 7-day stay at an alternative state quarantine facility, to include Covid-19 tests and medical…

  • Phuket

    PM in Phuket visit calls for cooperation in making re-opening a success

    Thai PM Prayut Chan-o-cha has called on all sectors on Phuket to work together to make the sandbox re-opening a success. The PM was speaking while on a visit to the southern island, which re-opened to vaccinated foreign tourists yesterday. The first international arrivals in over a year jetted in on Etihad Airways, which had 25 passengers from Abu Dhabi…

  • Phuket

    Phuket re-opens Thursday, hotels ready and waiting to welcome foreign guests

    As the southern island of Phuket gets ready to re-open to vaccinated foreign tourists on Thursday, hotel operators say they’re well prepared. A Bangkok Post report takes a look at the measures in place for the imminent launch of the Phuket “sandbox scheme”. Yesterday, PM Prayut Chan-o-cha highlighted the need for robust measures to stop the spread of Covid-19. At…

  • Tourism

    Koh Larn to pilot Pattaya’s reopening to tourists

    Koh Larn off the coast of Pattaya could be reopening to tourists in the near future. As Thailand prepares to reopen to foreign tourists by October, the Chon Buri island will serve as a pilot project for the area’s reopening. Pattaya Mayor Sontaya Khunpluem says the city is in favour of the Thai government’s 120-day reopening plan, a goal announced…

  • Phuket

    Phuket officials in last-minute scramble to fix sandbox hiccups

    The president of the Phuket Tourist Association says clarity is needed around a number of issues if the island’s July 1 re-opening is to proceed smoothly. According to a report in the Bangkok Post, Bhummikitti Ruktaengam says confusion over tracking apps and vaccine certificates are just 2 of the issues that need to be sorted out. The sandbox scheme was…

  • Phuket

    Phuket governor outlines plans to track and trace foreign arrivals

    The governor of Phuket says the authorities and provincial officials are creating a command centre for the purpose of tracking and tracing foreign tourists under the island’s sandbox scheme. The island re-opens in 1 week’s time to vaccinated tourists from low to medium-risk countries. According to a Pattaya News report, governor Narong Woonciew says a meeting was held yesterday between…

  • Phuket

    Flight traffic to Phuket expected to increase by 6% next month

    The state agency Aeronautical Radio of Thailand says it expects a 6% uptick in traffic to Phuket International Airport, once the southern island re-opens in a week’s time. Spokesman Tinnakorn Chuwong says the airport is ready to welcome foreign tourists under the sandbox scheme, which has now been given the go-ahead by Cabinet. The Bangkok Post reports that, while overall…

  • Phuket

    It’s happening: Phuket sandbox approved by Cabinet

    It’s been talked about until the buffalo came home – and then some. It was on, it was off, it was delayed, then it wasn’t. Finally, it’s been confirmed. After being closed to foreign tourists for over a year, the southern island of Phuket is set to re-open on July 1. Yesterday, the sandbox scheme, which will see the island…

  • Tourism

    TAT thinking up ways quarantine might be relaxed for tourists returning from Thailand

    The ever-inventive Tourism Authority of Thailand is looking at ways quarantine might be eased for tourists visiting Thailand, both on arrival here and on their return home. TAT governor Yuthasak Supasorn says “city bubbles” and activity-based travel arrangements in sandbox destinations could be the way forward. The arrangement would be between low-risk cities and would mean tourists could visit destinations…

  • Phuket

    Over 300 Phuket businesses awarded SHA Plus accreditation ahead of re-opening

    The Tourism Authority of Thailand has declared the southern island of Phuket as “sandbox-ready”, after awarding SHA Plus accreditation to more than 300 tourism businesses. Phuket is gearing up for a much-anticipated re-opening on July 1, although it must be pointed out that this is still subject to official approval. The SHA endorsement confirms that hotels and other tourism businesses…

  • Phuket

    Location-tracking wristbands and punishments for escapees: Phuket gets ready to welcome vaccinated tourists

    As the date of Phuket’s re-opening to vaccinated foreign tourists draws closer, officials are busy preparing all necessary measures prior to the influx. The “sandbox” scheme kicks off on July 1 and provincial officials have been rehearsing immigration and Covid-19 control measures at Phuket airport, the island’s ports, and the Tha Chat Chai checkpoint by the bridge onto the island.…

  • Pattaya

    Pattaya tourism operators not getting their hopes up over foreign arrivals

    Tourism operators in Pattaya are not holding out much hope of a mass return of foreign arrivals in the first few months after re-opening. Pattaya has been chosen as the first non-island location to re-open to vaccinated foreign tourists, but operators fear the constant indecision and changes to regulations will have a negative impact. Thanet Supornsahasrungsi from the Chon Buri…

  • Phuket

    Best-case for Phuket’s Sandbox: up to 1.2 million tourists, Kasikorn predicts

    Up to 1.2 million foreign tourists could travel to Thailand through Phuket’s “Sandbox” travel scheme. That’s the best-case scenario, according to the Kasikorn Research Centre. They estimate that the scheme, which is planned to allow vaccinated tourists to enter the country and stay on the island without going through quarantine, could draw in 550,000 people to 1.2 million from July…

  • Phuket

    Phuket governor asks for funds for tourist tracking app

    We’re not sure of the exact date when the Phuket sandbox idea was born, but we’re pretty sure the Thaiger had fewer grey hairs and definitely fewer wrinkles back then. What’s certain is that there has been a lot – a lot – of talk about Phuket’s July 1 re-opening and how exactly it will work. Rules have been introduced,…

  • Tourism

    Thai travel agents say ongoing third wave means no return of Chinese tourists for now

    The Association of Thai Travel Agents says the ongoing reporting of over 2,000 new Covid-19 infections every day means there will be no Chinese visitors coming for a while. ATTA president Sisdivachr Cheewarattanaporn points out that China has imposed tough restrictions on their citizens leaving the country, including mandatory quarantine on their return. “We can assume the Chinese government will…

  • Phuket

    As the clock ticks down, Phuket’s sandbox plan moves a step closer to approval

    The Thai PM says the cabinet has agreed in principle to the Phuket sandbox scheme, which will see the southern island re-open to vaccinated tourists from July 1. Quarantine will be waived for fully vaccinated international arrivals from a yet-to-be-determined list of “safe” countries. However, they will have to spend 14 days on the island before being allowed to travel…