Thailand Releases Timeline For the Removal of Covid-19 Entry Restrictions
The Government of Thailand has just released a timeline for the removal of all entry restrictions related to the Covid-19 Coronavirus.
Thailand’s capital Bangkok has tried to revive its tourism industry several times since the pandemic began. However, travelers still have to follow strict visa entry requirements to be allowed to visit the country.
The latest developments in the Kingdom’s reopening saga suggest that Coronavirus safeguard requirements could be on their way out in just a few months.
Travelers who are considering visiting the Land of Smiles this summer should be excited about the possibility of having entry requirements eased, regardless of how many variables there are.
Here’s an overview of the expected timeline of changes, as well as what it will take to make them happen.
Since reopening its borders during the pandemic, the country has been tinkering with its strict entry requirements to try and entice more tourists back.
Just a week ago, the government eliminated the requirement for travelers to submit a negative PCR test result prior to their flight, a move that several countries have adopted in recent months.
Modifications to Thailand’s entry requirements
The country, however, is not stopping there. More modifications to the Kingdom’s entry requirements are on the way, according to the Sports and Tourism Ministry – but only if the country manages to keep case levels low during Songkran next month.
However, if Coronavirus cases are as high as Thailand’s Department of Disease Control anticipates, the country’s restrictions may stay in place even longer.
The Songkran festival which celebrates New Year is Thailand’s largest holiday and is known around the world for its water splashing festivities.
Songkran is also a time when Thais return home to spend time with their families. This could potentially spread the Coronavirus nationwide.
For the last two years, the authorities have curtailed water-related celebrations during the holiday, while this year they have asked people to perform a Coronavirus test before celebrating.
Timeline of restrictions easing
The timeline for restriction changes will be as follows if case levels in the country remain low after the holiday:
- May 1 – ATK check performed by medical professionals will replace the RT-PCR test upon arrival – this is a faster and cheaper method of Coronavirus testing.
- June 1 – Abolition of the Test and Go scheme and Thailand Pass, allowing travelers to enter Thailand as usual
Meanwhile, Thailand’s Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn told reporters that several of Thailand’s neighbors have recently eased entry restrictions.
“Thailand has taken off like a rabbit since reopening to visitors last year. Many nations have opened borders and have fewer restrictions than us, so we cannot fall behind,” the minister said.
At present, travelers need a Thailand Pass to enter the country. The Thailand Pass is a QR code proving they have the necessary requirements – such as a Covid-19 vaccination, health insurance, and a stay at a designated hotel – to be allowed into the country.
Visitors can also enter through either the Test and Go or Sandbox schemes.