Thailand reinstates quarantine

UPDATE: Thailand’s Health Minister, Anutin Charnvirakul, announced that he intends to propose the restoration of the Test & Go scheme to the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) on 17th January 2022, according to Bangkok Post.

UPDATE: Travellers who have been approved for the Test & Go scheme can still enter the country after the previously stipulated deadline of 15th January 2022, as published in Bangkok Post on 14th January 2022.

Thailand’s entry requirements have been steadily relaxing over the past couple of months. The “Sandbox” entry programmes and “Test & Go” scheme have sparked a sense of hope for the return of pre-Covid travel norms in both international travellers and locals.

However, the recent spread of the new variant has forced officials to hit ‘pause’ on the nation’s reopening.

In light of local transmissions of the Covid-19 Omicron strain, the administration announced a temporary halt on approving applications for the “Test & Go” and “Sandbox” initiatives. Thus, all arrivals into Thailand are again required to undergo a mandatory quarantine period upon touchdown in Thailand.

Here are the details behind the announcement.

Travel-related news by The Smart Local, Thailand:

Arrivals in Thailand to quarantine for 7 – 10 days

As of 21st December 2021, all travellers coming into Thailand will be required to undergo quarantine for seven to 10 days due a pause in approving applications for the “Test & Go” and “Sandbox” schemes until 4th January 2022. All arrivals will also be subjected to RT-PCR testing, as published in Bangkok Post.

Thailand-quarantineImage credit: Bangkok Post

Travellers are not required to pay for the RT-PCR tests. Furthermore, travellers who have already been approved for entry can come into Thailand as planned.

Exceptions are made for those coming in under the Phuket Sandbox initiative.

Strict precautions put in place to combat new variant

The announcement was made on 21st December 2021 by Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, who clarified that the decision was made in response to the rapidly spreading Omicron variant.

Officials further stated that they have no plans to discourage arrivals.

Tourism revival will continue as planned, but under stricter measures.

Keeping ourselves and those around us safe

The news of Thailand reinstating quarantine comes amidst developments that suggested a return to pre-Covid travel norms.

We’re hopeful that the spread of the new variant and the heightened precautions are only temporary, and that the situation will continue to improve.

In the meantime, we can keep ourselves and others safe by continuing to practice safety measures such as wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing and frequently washing our hands.

Cover images adapted from: Skytrax Ratings

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