Thailand authority, the Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) has given the green light to reopen Phuket, allowing international tourists who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to visit the island with no quarantine, starting from July 1, 2021 – the first destination to reopen for international tourists.
For travellers to feel safe, the entire island’s population would be vaccinated at least 70% to get the herd immunity as well as to get the project’s rolling. It means that Phuket’s residents are prioritised for the vaccine roll-out with more than 930,000 doses to be administered before the reopening.
Phuket is the pioneer model for reopening the country for international tourists before expanding to other key tourist destinations such as Koh Samui, Krabi, Chiang Mai. The Phuket reopening plan means that the destination is opened three months earlier than the rest of Thailand which is set to reopen in October to those who are fully vaccinated.
3 stages of reopening Thailand for international tourists
From April1 2021, Thailand reduced the mandated quarantine period from 14 days to 7 days for fully vaccinated travellers in Phuket, Krabi, Phanga, Koh Samui, Chonburi (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai. For those who have not yet been vaccinated, the quarantine period is reduced from 14 days to 10 days in the entire country.
From July 1 2021, Phuket will be the first province to waive the mandated quarantine requirement for international travellers who have been fully vaccinated and they are required to stay in Phuket for 7 days before travelling to other destinations. This is a part of the government’s plan to reopen the country. For other destinations, a seven days quarantine period is still required.
From October 1 2021, quarantine is expected to be lifted in Phuket, Krabi, Phanga, Koh Samui, Chonburi (Pattaya) and Chiang Mai for foreign visitors who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Phuket’s model will be applied to five other main destinations before a full reopening of the country is expected to take place in January.
However, the plan to reopen Phuket to vaccinated foreign tourists in stages is pending the official announcement. Travellers are recommended to enquire at the Royal Thai Embassy or Consulate in their home country for more details.
What do travellers need to prepare before departure?
Under the plan, tourists are required to show COE, a vaccine certificate, vaccine passport or International Air Transport Association (IATA) travel pass as well as a negative PCR test before at least 72 hours before departure. Upon arrival at the Phuket International Airport, tourists will be required to undergo a COVID-19 screening, including PCR tests, and download the specified track and trace application to ensure that they only visit the designated areas.