Thailand: SEEN Beach Club show off bar in Koh Samui
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Thailand has requested that travellers coming into the country undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine period, which is undoubtedly a dampener for holidays and tourism trips. The foreign travel advice from the UK to Thailand reads: “Most travellers to Thailand, including all British nationals travelling from the UK, are required to complete 14 days’ quarantine at a State Quarantine or Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ) facility. While in ASQ you will not be allowed to leave your room except for Covid-19 tests or medical treatments.”
Thailand is currently on the Government’s amber list of travel destinations, meaning Brits are advised against going there unless for absolutely essential reasons.
When announced recently, the Government included just a small number of green countries on its list, including:
- Portugal, including the Azores and Madeira
- New Zealand
- The Falkland Islands
- Faroe Islands
- Israel and Jerusalem
- South Georgia and the Sandwich Islands
- St Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
The Government has assured the green list countries will be revisited on a regular basis.
Countries deemed safe for travel are decided based on the following criteria:
The percentage of a country’s population that has been vaccinated
The rate of infection
The prevalence of variants of concern
The country’s access to reliable scientific data and genomic sequencing
Certain data points are also considered within these criteria, including testing rates and infection rates in the country.
The Government is due to issue its next update on countries for travel on June 7.
Reports have suggested that Transport Secretary Grant Shapps will provide updates on safety every two weeks after this date, much like last year.
But Prime Minister Boris Johnson quashed hopes of an exotic holiday away this summer as he stated last week he doesn’t expect new countries to be added to the green list in coming weeks.
He said: “There’s a very limited list as you know and we will certainly be making sure that people travelling abroad will be subject to all the tests and constraints to prevent the virus being imported. That is why it is such a tiny list of countries and I don’t expect we will be adding to it very rapidly.”
There’s been a spike in people travelling to amber list countries anyway, leading Mr Johnson to state countries in this category are not for holidays.
Skills Minister Gillian Keegan said on Wednesday people travelling anyway to amber list countries was their “personal responsibility” in terms of quarantine and consequences.
Ms Keegan added: “This is guidance from the Government, we haven’t legislated to ban people from going on holiday, but we wouldn’t advise going to amber list countries.”
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When will Thailand reopen to tourists without quarantine?
As it stands, the Thai Government have not confirmed when tourists can come into the country without self isolating for 14 days.
According to Fan Club Thailand, however, the Thai authorities will be reopening in a phased approach starting with the island of Phuket on July 1, 2021.
However, to visit Phuket without quarantining on arrival you must have proof of having had both Covid jabs as well as a Certificate of Entry (CoE) on entry.
Other requirements include:
- Travel insurance with Covid cover
- Downloading the Thailand Plus tracking app before departure and uploading the relevant information
- Flying directly to Phuket International Airport
- Present a negative PCR test result issued no longer than 72 hours before departure
- Covid-19 test on arrival
- Stay in Phuket for a minimum of seven days before travelling around Thailand
Phase two, which holds the same requirements, will see tourists able to visit Chiang Mai, Ko Samui, Krabi, Pattaya, Phang Nga and Phuket without the need to quarantine on arrival.
Fan Club Thailand writes: “By the end of 2021/start of 2022, Thai authorities say that quarantine should be lifted entirely in all areas of Thailand for vaccinated visitors.
“The proposed date for this to happen is on or before January 1, 2022.”
However, even if Thailand does relax its entry requirements for British tourists, it’s worth noting the UK Government may decide to keep it on the amber list or downgrade it to red, which in both cases require quarantining upon arrival in Britain.
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