April 19

Thailand opens Phuket for Vaccinated Tourists


Thailand authorities agreed to allow vaccinated foreigners to travel to its biggest holiday island, Phuket, without undergoing quarantine.

Starting July, tourists will have to fly directly to the southern island of the Andaman sea to enjoy quarantine-free stays. Other requirements for this are still being discussed.

For startups, visitors must show proof that they had been vaccinated and not infected upon arrival. They may also be required to take PCR tests at the airport and be asked to install the government’s tracing app.

Samui island, another tourist spot from Thailand, is not eligible for this program. Although this island is hype on the local media, the government decided the island’s airport is too small to handle direct international flights.

According to the government, the Phuket plan was approved by business operators on the island beforehand. "They have joined forces and offered to be a reopening model for major tourist provinces," said Deputy Prime Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow on Thursday. "There are flights to the province and hotels to attract quality tourists," he added.

For the "sandbox" experiment to begin, Phuket must achieve herd immunity by vaccinating 70% of the population, according to the Tourism Authority of Thailand Gov. Yuthasak Supasorn. The plan is to roll out the first round of vaccinations from April 15 and the second round from May 15.

The sandbox plan is one of the reopening measures the government intends to implement in the upcoming months.

Source: Nikkei Asia


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