Thailand’s Sandbox Program Now Open to Everyone Worldwide
Thailand’s Tourism Authority has announced that any fully vaccinated person in the world and Thailand can book holidays in Phuket.
The new changed in the Phuket Sandbox scheme will allow previously excluded Indonesia and Malaysia citizens, among others, to travel to Phuket and some of its neighbouring islands.
The announcement by Thailand’s Tourism Authority is part of a much-needed push to revive the tourism sector after the government reduced the mandatory quarantine period to seven days for fully vaccinated tourists.
The Tourism Authority said on its website that Immigration would no longer follow a list of eligible countries, meaning Thailand is now welcoming travellers from any country in the world to the Sandbox scheme.
Furthermore, unvaccinated children would be able to travel with their vaccinated parents.
The Phuket sandbox scheme that began on July 1 has now attracted more than 38,000 visitors to the island and generated an estimated US$68 million in revenue.
The Thai government reduced quarantine to seven days which applies to tourists visiting Phuket, Surat Thani (Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao), Phangnga (Khao Lak and Koh Yao) and Krabi (Koh Phi Phi, Koh Ngai and Railay Beach).
Fully vaccinated tourists can now travel straight to the designated areas of Phangnga and Krabi upon landing in Phuket. After staying there for seven days, tourists are free to travel to other destinations in Thailand.
Phuket sandbox program the first step
Since the closing of the Kingdom to international travellers almost 90 percent of Phuket’s hotels have shuttered. Tourism operators still remain extremely pessimistic about the prospects for a meaningful revival of Phuket’s economy.
Hotel owners and Tourism operators have been pleading with the central government to simplify Immigration requirements to increase tourist numbers and above all, to reduce the high cost of the Covid tests for which all international and local tourists must pay.
The Phuket sandbox program is the first step in the government’s plan to open up more tourist destinations in Thailand. Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Phetchaburi and Hua Hin are scheduled to open to vaccinated foreign visitors starting on Nov 1, with hopefully no quarantine.
Meanwhile, The United Kingdom and the United States still have travel advisories as the Kingdom tries to bring down the number of Covid cases and death due to the delta variant.
Thailand presently remains on the red list for travellers from England, Travellers must quarantine and take two Covid tests upon their return to England.