Foreigners can still enter under Phuket Sandbox


Foreign visitors can still gain entry into Thailand under the Phuket Sandbox programme and by using AQ (alternate quarantine) services after suspension of the Thailand Pass, the Foreign Affairs Ministry said on Tuesday.

The Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) announced earlier on Tuesday that it was suspending the Test & Go scheme, in which Thailand Pass registrants could enter the country without having to quarantine provided they tested negative via the RT-PCR method upon arrival.

The CCSA said Thailand Pass will not accept new registration from midnight of Wednesday (December 22) and that it would re-evaluate the situation on January 4.

About 200,000 people who have been approved prior to the announcement would be allowed to enter the country under the Test & Go scheme, but they need to undergo two RT-PCR tests – the first one on arrival and the second on the 7th day. The government will cover the cost of these tests.

“After Thailand Pass is suspended, foreigners can still register to enter Thailand under the Phuket Sandbox scheme, or use the AQ service provided by certified hotels,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Tanee Sangrat.

“Under the Phuket Sandbox, visitors who tested negative upon arrival are required to stay in Phuket for seven days, after which they can travel to other provinces, provided they test negative using the RT-PCR method after seven days,” he said.

“The suspension of the Thailand Pass is only temporary in a bid to prevent the Omicron variant from spreading,” Tanee pointed out.

“Authorities will monitor and evaluate the situation closely. If there are any changes, the Foreign Ministry will notify the public as well as international visitors immediately,” he added.