Fully Vaccinated Expats From Any Country Can Now Be Part of The Thai Sandbox Tourism Program

Thai authorities eliminated their list of “approved countries” to open up the sandbox tourism program to all fully vaccinated visitors from anywhere in the world. Thailand’s Tourism Authority has welcomed the decision, which means Indonesian and Malaysian tourists can now visit the country. According to Covid-19, Malaysia was Thailand’s second-largest source of foreign arrivals, with over 4 million Malaysian tourists arriving in 2019.
Furthermore, the recently-announced reduction in mandatory quarantine also applies to those participating in sandbox programs, with tourists now only required to spend 7 days in their original destination before traveling abroad. Now, Sandbox tourists can visit Phuket, Koh Samui, Koh Phang Ngan, Koh Tao, Khao Lak, Koh Yao, Koh Phi Phi, Koh Ngai, and Railay Beach.
Since the Phuket Sandbox Program was launched on July 1, it has welcomed over 38,000 foreign visitors and generated around 2.3 billion baht, according to officials. The Bangkok Post reports, however, that tourism operators on the southern island are pessimistic about the coming high season. 90% of the island’s hotels are closed, so they are urging the government to simplify the entry process and reduce the cost of mandatory PCR tests.
Foreign tourists are also deterred by the fact that Thailand is on a “no-go” list in some countries. The United States and the United Kingdom both warn their citizens against traveling to Thailand because of the high infection rate and low vaccination rates. The UK currently requires hotel quarantine and two Covid tests for tourists returning from Thailand.

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