The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) announced today that Phuket’s highly anticipated reopening to tourism is now officially in effect, with the launch today of the Phuket Sandbox program that welcomes fully vaccinated international visitors to the destination with no need to quarantine.
Right from day one to four, major airlines including Etihad, Emirates, Singapore Airlines, and Thai Airways International (THAI) are flying direct to Phuket from cities like London, Frankfurt, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Singapore.
H.E. Mr. Phiphat Ratchakitprakarn, Minister of Tourism and Sports, said “The reopening of Phuket signifies a crucial step forward in the revitalization of Thailand’s tourism industry with the island serving as a pilot destination. It is indeed wonderful to be welcoming visitors once again, and they can rest assured that their safety and well-being are of utmost importance to Thailand.”
The Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration (SHA) certification scheme, introduced in May 2020, is itself certified by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC). There are currently 1,300+ hotels, restaurants, activities, attractions, shops, and other venues and businesses across Phuket that are SHA certified, meaning they have the required safety and hygiene measures to control COVID-19. More of these establishments are also becoming SHA Plus certified, meaning that at least 70 percent of their employees are fully vaccinated.
Mr. Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT Governor, said, “It is with great pleasure we can now welcome the world back to Phuket. Fully vaccinated visitors can once again enjoy the famed beaches, warm hospitality, and many other attractions that have made Phuket one of the world’s favorite destinations.”
The reopening of other places like Koh Samui, Krabi, Phang Nga, and Chiang Mai is planned to follow.
Among Phuket’s commitments to safely reopen to fully vaccinated visitors are the vaccination program for 70 percent of the island’s population. According to TAT, to date, 80 percent of the inhabitants have already received their first vaccine dose, while more than 60 percent have received both doses.
Mr. Narong Woonchiew, Governor of Phuket Province, said, “On behalf of the people and the tourism industry of
Phuket, I would like to say how great an honor it is for us to be the pilot destination in the much-anticipated revitalization of Thai tourism. We are extremely excited to again be able to welcome travelers to the famed beaches, legendary accommodation, spectacular attractions, and warm hospitality that makes Phuket one of the world’s favorite tropical island getaways.
More information about the Phuket Sandbox program such as entry requirements, on-arrival procedures, hygiene measures, and FAQs can be found here.