Travelling to Phuket, Thailand? Here is Your Complete Sandbox Program Guide
20 Oct 2021 | Kudo Hotel
Following the Thai government's confirmation that the country's reopening plan will stay unchanged despite a spike in COVID 19 instances across the country, additional facts concerning the tourists' journey when visiting Phuket under the Sandbox Program have been revealed.
This article will discuss the various things you should know before travelling to Phuket, Thailand, specifically under the Sandbox Program.
Phuket Province is home to some of the world’s most beautiful beach locations. The place boasts pristine white sands, nodding palm palms, glistening waters, and bustling villages. It will be tough to run out of things to see and do on this particular island, as you can do anything from natural or artificial to land-based or water-based activities.
What is Phuket Sandbox Program?
The Phuket Sandbox plan, which began in July 2021, is a new strategy that allows fully vaccinated visitors to enter Thailand without being quarantined. Phuket is scheduled to become the first Thai province to adopt this approach and implement these restrictions. Furthermore, more about the program is detailed below:
Who can travel to Phuket, Thailand?
As stated earlier, people eligible to travel under the Phuket Sandbox Program should be vaccinated travellers from low- and moderate-risk countries. The countries with low to moderate risks are expressly listed by Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health. It has been specified that you must be in these countries for a minimum of 21 days prior to your stated departure date. If the nation you are travelling from is not on the list, you must undertake an obligatory seven-day quarantine. Additionally, unvaccinated children under 18 travelling with vaccinated parents are permitted to enter the province under the program. Meanwhile, visitors who are not vaccinated will have to spend ten days quarantine at any AQ Hotels in Phuket.
Additionally, here are some details you will need to become aware of:
a. Travellers must be vaccinated 14 days to one year before arrival. The vaccine type must be approved by either Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health or the WHO (World Health Organization). Furthermore, the vaccine manufacturers approved by the Ministry of Public Health of Thailand as of 31 March 2021 are as follows:
- SK BIOSCIENCE AstraZeneca/Oxford
- Pfizer/ BioNTech
- Serum Institute of India
- Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson
- The Beijing Institute of Biological Products
b. Children and teens from ages 6 to 18 must pay for a Rapid Antigen Test upon arrival at Phuket International Airport. Antigen testing is frequently used to diagnose respiratory pathogens such as influenza and respiratory syncytial virus. They are now allowed for use on nasopharyngeal or nasal swab specimens inserted directly into the extraction buffer or reagent of the assay.
c. Children under the age of 6 who travel with their parents will not be required to present a vaccination certificate upon arrival.
d. Phuket Sandbox is open to travellers arriving by air or sea.
What are the Phuket Sandbox Program Requirements?
Like everyone else travelling to Thailand during the COVID-19 outbreak, international travellers must apply for a Certificate of Entry (COE). Additionally, the appropriate type of Thai visa or eligibility to use the Thailand visa exemption is required. Apart from these, the following are additional requirements for travelling to Phuket:
- Vaccine Certificate/proof of vaccination: To obtain your Covid-19 Vaccination Certificate, you must have completed the entire course of the Covid-19 Vaccine according to the correct protocol, and at least seven days have passed.
- RT-PCR COVID 19 test before arrival in Phuket: The RT-PCR test for COVID-19 is performed at the location specified by you (this can either be your home address or office).
- ThailandPlus alert application on mobile phone: This enables users to self-monitor and assess their risk of contracting COVID-19 infection based on their geographic location.
- Stay at SHA+ Hotel in Phuket: Despite the absence of a quarantine requirement, arriving tourists must stay in hotels that have earned the Thai government’s SHA+ accreditation for safety and health measures.
- COVID-19 Insurance: A health insurance policy covering COVID-19-related treatment for at least 100,000 USD for the duration of their anticipated stay in Thailand is required.
- Pre-paid RT-PCR COVID 19 tests in Phuket: All obligatory COVID-19 tests must be scheduled and paid for in advance using the PSAS System. You must also submit proof of payment for RT-PCR testing with the Certificate of Entry application.
How can I get a flight?
At the moment, only a few airlines, including El Al Israel, Cathay Pacific, Qatar Airways, Emirates, Etihad, Thai Airways, and Singapore Airlines, operate daily flights to Phuket. If you’re looking for the best airline ticket prices, March is regarded as the best month to get good deals, with an average 15% price reduction.
Reminders during your stay in Phuket:
Guests staying in SHA+ Sandbox hotel will be subjected to a maximum of three COVID 19 tests during their stay, depending on the duration. The first test will be administered at the airport upon arrival, the second on Day 6, and the third on Day 12. Additionally, you will be required to practice proper social distance, mask-wearing, and handwashing during your stay.
Recent updates on the Phuket Sandbox Program:
Luckily, the Centre for Economic Situation Administration (CESA) has finally approved the Phuket Sandbox program. Phuket province is scheduled to open to tourists without quarantine in the third quarter of 2021. If this will be successful, it will be implemented in other popular tourist areas like Chonburi, Chiang Mai, Krabi, Phang Nga, and Surat Thani in the fourth quarter of 2021.