Thailand will eliminate quarantine requirements for fully-vaccinated travelers from 10 low risk countries starting November 1.
According to the Thailand tourism board, all arrivals from approved countries must pass a COVID-19 PCR testing before they travel to Thailand. A second test will be required when they arrive. After the test is negative, the person will be able to travel and move around Thailand in the same manner as any Thai citizen.
The United States, Canada, Germany and China are among the 10 countries that are considered low-risk. According to Prayuth Chan-ocha, Thailand's prime minister, the new phase of the reopening plan will allow entertainment venues to open and alcohol sales to resume. This is expected to add more countries to the list by December.
Thailand Saowakhon Brown/Getty Images: Face masks are mandatory in Thailand
While visitors from non-approved countries are welcome to travel to Thailand, they will need to comply with other COVID-19 requirements. A Sandbox model allows tourists who have been fully vaccinated from 70 countries to travel to Thailand. They can stay for seven days in designated areas of Phuket, Surat Thani and Krabi before travelling to other parts. Visitors are required to undergo regular testing under the Sandbox system.
Thai Airways will resume service to 36 destinations this winter in anticipation of the reopening of borders in November. From November, airlines including Etihad, KLM and Qatar Airways fly from the US to Thailand. They usually stop at one destination.
In regions like Chiang Mai Sean Pavone/Getty Images, cases are on the rise
Thailand is preparing for more tourists. However, the nationwide emergency continues through November 30. While overall cases are decreasing, some areas are experiencing significant increases. The Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration is concerned about the rise in Chiang Mai just before the reopening of the borders next month. According to the Bangkok Post, they will continue monitoring the situation.
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The Thai Embassy in the US reported that 37% of the 70 million Thais have been fully vaccinated. Officials plan to increase the vaccination program in the coming weeks.