<p>Bangkok, Thailand</p>

Bangkok, Thailand

Thailand travel rules: Can I go on holiday there and what tests do I need?

Thailand was removed from the UK’s red list on 11 October

Helen Coffey
Tuesday 12 October 2021 13:28

As of 11 October, Thailand is no longer on the UK’s red list for international travel.

This means that travellers coming into Britain from Thailand no longer have to quarantine for 11 nights in a government-mandated hotel, at a cost of thousands per person - making a holiday there a much more appealing prospect, just in time for winter.

But is Thailand letting UK travellers in?

Here’s what we know so far.

Can UK arrivals enter Thailand?

Yes - but there are strings attached.

If you want to travel to Thailand, you must apply for permission to travel via the Royal Thai Government’s online platform.

Most travellers to Thailand, including British nationals travelling from the UK, are required to complete 14 days’ quarantine at a State Quarantine or Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ) facility. While in ASQ, you will normally not be allowed to leave your room except for medical treatment or Covid-19 tests, according to the Foreign Office advice.

However, in some areas of Thailand it is possible to complete some or all of the quarantine period without being restricted to an ASQ facility. Schemes include the Phuket Sandbox, which enables fully vaccinated Brits to swerve quarantine when staying Phuket. They must stay on the island for at least seven nights and will then be allowed to visit other destinations in Thailand.

Restrictions will further ease next month; Thailand will end quarantine requirements for fully vaccinated tourists from at least 10 low-risk destinations from 1 November, officials have said.

The list of nations allowed in includes the UK, as well as China, Singapore, Germany and the US.

When tourists from the countries are permitted to arrive, “they should present a [negative] Covid test... and test once again upon arrival”, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-ocha said.

If the second test is also negative, any visitor from those countries will be able to “travel freely like Thais”.

Are flights and holidays operating to Thailand?

Yes - flights and holidays are still operating, though at a reduced rate.

For example, British Airways is selling flight and hotel packages departing this month. Seven nights in Phuket staying at the Amari will currently set you back £941, including return flights from London Heathrow, departing 23 October.

Thai Airways is offering direct flights from London to Phuket; KLM, Swiss and Singapore Airlines all have connecting flights to Bangkok.

As of 11 October, the Foreign Office has also removed its advice against all but essential travel to the country, so British travellers should have no problem getting a valid travel insurance policy to cover their trips.

What’s are the Covid restrictions like on the ground?

You will be required to wear a face mask and follow other public health measures when using public transport, including planes, trains, buses and taxis. In some provinces, public transport may stop earlier than normal or have less capacity than normal.

Domestic flights in and out of provinces categorised as dark red, including Bangkok, are currently prohibited.

Until further notice you must wear a mask in all indoor and outdoor public spaces in Thailand and in vehicles if you are with others. If you do not wear a mask you may have to pay a fine.

The Thai government also advises that you should avoid unnecessary travel and crowded places, and scan the ‘Thai Chana’ QR code where available.

A number of disease control measures at national and local levels are also in place. These include a colour rating for each of Thailand’s 76 provinces based on the number of Covid-19 cases. Restrictions in each province and for movement between provinces depend on the colour rating and any additional local rules, and they may change at any time.

Thailand will not open entertainment venues or serve alcohol until 1 December - and several provinces including the capital Bangkok still have a 9pm-4am curfew.

What about coming back to the UK?

Since Thailand is now off the red list, and on the symbolic ROW (“rest of world”) list, fully vaccinated UK travellers only need to book a day two PCR test for their return, taking it and sending it off for results within the two days after landing.

Unvaccinated travellers or those who have only had one jab will need to self-isolate for 10 days on return, plus take an additional PCR test on day eight of quarantine.

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