No quarantine for Phuket beginning July 1
Tourists planning to visit Phuket, Thailand and having been vaccinated can do so without going through quarantine starting July 1, 2021.
- The travel and tourism industry in Thailand has championed the government, which has just approved the waiver of quarantine requirements for vaccinated visitors to Phuket.
- Phuket has had no new COVID-19 cases for 89 days.
- Without a positive change in the economy, residents’ incomes will fall below the poverty line.
In a move largely anticipated after intense lobbying by the huge travel and tourism industry in Thailand, the government approved the waiver of quarantine requirements for vaccinated visitors arriving in Phuket starting July 1. This is the first major reopening for the popular tourist destination.
An economic panel chaired by Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha yesterday approved the proposal from Phuket’s private sector and corporate groups to vaccinate at least 70% of islanders for reopening to vaccinated tourists, Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn said.
Thai tourism and aviation company, with the support of the Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT), the Thai Chamber of Commerce, the Thai Hotel Association (THA), the Association of Thai Travel Agencies (ATTA), SKAL THAILAND, PATA TH, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) ), #OpenThailandSafely Campaign, Board of Airline Representatives Business Association (BAR) and Airlines Association of Thailand (AAT) commended the government for its success in containing the COVID-19 pandemic in Thailand but expressed their desire to Start Now Overseas tourism new for vaccinated travelers.
Phuket has had no new COVID-19 cases for 89 days. Phuket authorities have approved plans to welcome non-quarantine visitors on July 1 to boost the local economy and will receive a million doses of COVID-19 vaccine beforehand. There is an urgent need for foreign tourists to visit Phuket to boost both the economy and the tourism sector. Previously, a local resident earned an average of 40,000 baht per month. In February that value fell to around 8,000 baht. Without change, this will drop to 1,964 baht in July, which is below the poverty line.
A survey found that foreigners are interested in visiting Phuket without quarantine. According to a local official, those foreigners visiting without quarantine will be tracked using the COVID-19 mobile tracking app.
The government plans to test the Phuket reopening plan in front of other major tourist hotspots such as Koh Samui to get the tourism industry back on its feet, which has been in a year without its millions of tourists who contributed to a fifth of the economy before the pandemic Was affected. Koh Samui, which is following Phuket, is also asking for permission to allow foreign travelers to skip the quarantine requirements. Ratchaporn Poolsawadee, the president of the Koh Samui Tourism Association, hopes Samui will get the approval.
The approval for Phuket means it will reopen three months earlier than the rest of the country, which is expected to reopen for those who are not fully vaccinated until October.
Phuket residents will also have priority when the vaccine is rolled out. More than 930,000 doses are expected to be administered before reopening, said Bhummikitti Ruktaengam, president of the island’s tourism association.