Thailand’s Borders are Reopening to Some Travelers

Medical tourists, businessmen, and foreigners with work permits will be allowed in from July 1.

Thailand’s Grand Palace and the Bangkok skyline at first light. (Photo: tawanlubfah/iStock)

After five weeks without community transmission of Covid-19, Thailand is set to further ease its lockdown restrictions tomorrow. All nightlife venues will have permission to reopen, and the government has given the green light for some foreign travelers to enter the country.

Dr. Taweesilp Visanuyothin, a spokesman for Thailand’s Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) said yesterday that pubs, bars, karaoke lounges, and wet massage parlors could resume operations with health and safety measures in place. These include maintaining a distance of two meters between tables and the use of the Thai Chana contact tracing platform.

The Thai government has also agreed to allow foreigners who hold work permits, have residency or family in the country to return, but all eligible travelers will be subject to a 14-day quarantine. A proposal to let in international tourists through “travel bubble” arrangements with other countries was not approved by the CCSA. However, Dr. Taweesilp said that some medical tourism could resume from Wednesday, and visitors undergoing cosmetic surgery and fertility treatment will be quarantined at the hospital where they are seeking treatment.

Meanwhile, investors and highly skilled workers from China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea will once again be allowed into the kingdom, although they should expect a two-week quarantine at their own expense inside private facilities arranged by the Thai government. Short-term business visitors under a “fast track” scheme will be exempt from the requirement, so long as they carry health certificates proving they do not have Covid-19 and take an additional test upon arrival. In related news, the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand has formally announced that it will lift its months-long ban on international flights tomorrow.

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