Thailand’s Center for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) has agreed in principle to allow citizens of certain countries to enter Thailand from July 1st.
The program, dubbed as “travel bubbles,” will use bilateral agreements with selected nations to provide access to Thailand without the need to undergo the 14-day state quarantine procedure.
China, Japan, South Korea, Vietnam, and New Zealand are among the nations under consideration for the program.
Initially, the plan will limit foreign visitors to 1,000 people per day and focus mostly on business travelers and people seeking medical treatment in Thailand.
Deputy government spokeswoman, Traisuree Taisaranakul, said that the final plan would be submitted to the CCSA on Wednesday for approval. She said the success of the program would determine when general tourism can return to Thailand:
“General foreign tourists will later be allowed to visit Thailand if the tourism promotion program proves successful in terms of the transmission control.”
While the exact details of the program are not finalized, it is expected that visitors will need to undergo covid-19 screening tests twice – before they leave their country and after they arrive in Thailand.
It is also expected that visitors will have restrictions imposed on what areas of Thailand they can visit. They may also be required to register via a smartphone application for tracking while in the country.
The Tourism and Sports Ministry are discussing the final details with the Public Health Ministry, Interior Ministry, and Foreign Ministry before submission to the CCSA on Wednesday.
However, the plan is facing objections from security authorities who believe that allowing visitors to enter Thailand again will lead to a second wave of covid-19 cases.
They also mentioned the 14-day mandatory quarantine rules for returning Thai citizens who may feel that foreign visitors are given preferential treatment by not undergoing quarantine on arrival.
A recent survey gauging public opinion showed that just over 75 percent of Thai citizens are concerned about tourists returning to Thailand anytime soon.
Source: Bangkok Post