what you need to know as the country drops pre-arrival PCR tests

Thailand has updated its Covid-19 travel rules so vaccinated tourists no longer need to show a negative PCR test upon arrival.

The country launched a new quarantine-free visa program on February 1, allowing vaccinated travelers from any destination to visit. Tourists of any nationality can apply to enter Thailand without quarantine, provided they are fully vaccinated.

Visitors will still need to be tested for Covid on their first and fifth days in the country as part of the Test and Go programme. Once they test negative, they are free to leave the hotel and travel freely across the country.

Thailand’s Covid-19-hit tourism industry, which welcomed nearly 40 million tourists in the year before the pandemic, is welcoming the return of international travelers. If a trip full of culture, idyllic beaches, island hopping and an amazing food scene tempts you, here’s what you need to know before you set off.

Who can travel to Thailand?

Travellers who have received a full dose of Covid-19 vaccine can now fly to Thailand without quarantine.

The last dose of the vaccine must be given at least 14 days before arrival. Travelers aged 12 to 17 who are travelling to Thailand alone must receive at least one dose of an approved vaccine at least 14 days before travelling to Thailand. People traveling with parents and those under 12 are exempt from this requirement.

The new rules allow travel to any province in Thailand, not just those listed in the country’s sandbox program.

What do I need to get a Thailand Quarantine Free Visa?

To qualify for a quarantine-free visa to visit Thailand, tourists need to meet the following conditions:

  • Proof of full doses of approved Covid-19 vaccinations taken at least 14 days prior to travel.
  • Covid-19 insurance with a minimum of $20,000. This has been reduced from the initial $50,000 requirement.
  • Proof of advance payment for a one-night stay in a government-approved hotel, which should also include the cost of two Covid-19 tests: a PCR test on the first day and an antigen self-test on the fifth day.

Which vaccines are approved for travel to Thailand?

Authorities are sanctioning all major Covid-19 vaccinations according to the latest guidelines from the Thai government.

This includes Pfizer-BioNTech, Oxford-AstraZeneca, Covishield, Johnson & Johnson, Sinovac, SK Bioscience-AstraZeneca, Moderna and Sinopharm.

What do I need to do before flying to Thailand?

Travelers must apply for a Thailand Pass before traveling to Thailand. This will generate the QR code needed to enter the country.

To obtain a pass, visitors must provide proof of vaccinations. All travelers must also have an approved hotel reservation for the first night in Thailand (which should include airport transfers).

The first day is the day you land in Thailand, unless you arrive after 6pm, in which case you should count the second day as your first day.

All travelers must download and install the MorChana app and make sure it is always on. This must also be used to record the antigen test on the fifth day.

Which airlines fly from United Arab Emirates to Thailand?

Both Emirates and Etihad Airways fly from the UAE to Thailand.Photo: Emirates

Both Etihad Airways and Emirates fly from the UAE to Thailand with a journey time of about six hours.

You can fly from Abu Dhabi to Bangkok with Etihad Airways, starting at AED 2,315 ($630) in economy class. Emirates national airline also flies to Phuket.

From Dubai, Emirates fares in economy class to Bangkok are AED 2,395 and to Phuket is slightly more expensive. Thai Airways also operates flights from Bangkok to Dubai.

What restrictions are in place in Thailand?

Staff are clearing the swimming pool at Chatrium Bangkok Riverside Hotel as Thailand's battered tourism industry prepares to ease Covid-19 travel restrictions for the second time.AFP

Masks are mandatory across the country and must be worn both indoors and outdoors in public places and on public transport. If you don’t wear a mask, you may have to pay a fine.

The Thai government also recommends that you avoid unnecessary travel and crowded places, and scan the Thai Chana QR code when available.

The provinces in Thailand are color-coded, and each color has its own level of restriction. These categories range from the least restrictive blue to red with rules and restrictions on dining in restaurants, group gatherings, store closures and curfews.

Is Covid-19 still endemic in Thailand?

Passengers disembark on a ferry in Koh Phi Phi, Thailand.AFP

Thailand recorded 25,752 new Covid-19 cases in the week ended April 1, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

The country has launched a mass vaccination campaign, aiming to vaccinate 70% of the local population by 2022. Johns Hopkins University reports that the country has reached its self-imposed goals, with more than 72% of the population now fully vaccinated.

When is the best time to travel to Thailand?

Tourists visit Wat Arun, also known as Wat Arun, in Bangkok, a day after Thailand's restart of its

November to March is traditionally the best weather to travel to Thailand, as this is the end of the monsoon season, which means lush landscapes and pleasant temperatures.

Thailand’s monsoons are back in the country from July to October, which can mean anything from afternoon showers to major floods, making this low season for tourists.

– This article was first published on November 1, 2021

Updated: April 1, 2022 at 6:04 pm

Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button