Asia Business Channel

Phuket will reopen in October on a limited basis as the ‘test case’ for international tourism


Thailand’s Ministry of Tourism has announced that the Phuket will open to foreign tourists in October and will serve as a “test case” on whether the country can safely open to foreign tourists amid the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Yuthasak Supasorn, Governor of The Tourism Authority of Thailand made the official announcement in late August, and said that the island of Phuket will serve as the experimental ground for the upcoming opening of borders testing how successful restarting tourism is.

Supasorn said that since Thailand is testing its capabilities to manage international tourism amid the pandemic that there are conditions for tourists to visit the country, including:

• Travellers must fly directly into Phuket
• A negative PCR test may be required for all people entering Phuket
• Tourists must stay in Thailand for at least 30 days
• The first 14-days of tourists stay in Phuket will be quarantine in their hotel
• To exit quarantine and travel in Phuket, travellers must register two negative PCR tests
• To leave Phuket and travel to other locations in Thailand, travellers must conduct a third PCR test on the third week of their visit

At the time of writing, the government of Thailand had not finalized which countries will be welcomed in its shores.

However, it is most logical that the country will open its borders starting with neighboring countries in the Southeast Asia region who have successfully contained the Covid-19 virus, and/or countries with important business and economic ties to Thailand.

Since July, Thailand has also allowed a small and select group of foreigners to enter the country, starting with medical tourists, and direct family members of Thai nationals, business investors, and skilled foreign workers. The Phuket announcement is the first general tourism announcement since the closure of the country in March.




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