Thailand travel restrictions explained

Floating market in Damnoen Saduak near Bangkok_iStock-496160257_Chalabala

Considering a trip to Thailand? Confused by travel restrictions? Don't worry, we have all your questions answered!

Last updated: 03 May 2022

I heard something about a ‘sandbox scheme’…

Correct! Up until the 1st of May, Thailand was running a sandbox entry scheme in certain parts of the country, in addition to a Test-and-Go scheme. This is no longer the case, as the government eased restrictions and implemented a new set of travel entry requirements.

So what do the new travel entry requirements look like after the 1st of May?

Happily, the new regulations make things a lot easier! They come in two flavours: “fully-vaccinated persons” and “Unvaccinated/Not fully vaccinated persons”. Both types will need to:

  • register on the Thailand Pass website,
  • submit their passport details, and
  • provide proof of insurance with at least 10,000 USD coverage for medical treatments in Thailand. In addition, there are some specific steps for each category:

Fully Vaccinated Persons also need to provide:

  • Certificate of Vaccination (according to Thai Ministry of Public Health regulations)
Boats parked in an azure beach surrounded by karst rock formations in Krabi, Thailand

Limestone karst formations in Krabi

Unvaccinated/Not fully vaccinated persons have two options:

Option 1 - No quarantine

  • Travellers who don’t wish to quarantine will, in addition to the three requirements above, need to provide a COVID-19 RT-PCR negative test result issued within 72 hours before traveling.

Option 2 – Quarantine:

Travellers who cannot undergo an RT-PCR test result within 72 hours before traveling or wish to be quarantined must further:

  • Provide Alternative Quarantine (AQ) hotel confirmation for 5 days (including 1 RT-PCR test)
  • Undergo an RT-PCR test on Day 4 - 5 in Thailand during the mandatory 5-day quarantine at their AQ hotel.

Are there any restrictions on where I can go?

No! Once you’ve passed through Immigration (and provided you’ve not opted to quarantine) you’re free to travel when and where you like.

Can I travel to Thailand from my country?

The United Kingdom, United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand are all included in Thailand’s Visa Exemption scheme. For a list of all countries eligible, please the official list here.

Do I still need a PCR test for Thailand?

Not if you’re able to provide proof of full vaccination! Full vaccine for Thailand consists of at least two doses of an approved vaccine (AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are all approved) administered no less than 14 days before you travel.

If this doesn’t apply to you, though, you will need a PCR test either within 72 hours before you fly or during a 5-day quarantine.

Do I need to quarantine on arrival?

The good news is no quarantine is required for fully-vaccinated travellers or those who have taken a PCR test within 72 hours of travel. Unvaccinated travellers who have not been tested before arrival will need to quarantine for 5 days in a government-approved hotel.

Buddha statue peeks through Banyan tree roots in Ayutthaya historical park

Ayutthaya historical park

Is a 'Thailand Pass' still required?

Yes, a Thailand Pass is still required for all visitors.

What about children? Are there any special requirements?

If anything it’s even easier for kids. Anyone under the age of 17 doesn’t need to register separately with Thailand Pass (their parents will need to register them under their own application, though) and under-18’s travelling with their parents are exempt from vaccine requirements!

Where do I apply for the Thailand Pass?

You can apply on the official website.

How did the sandbox and Test-and-Go systems work previously?

The sandbox scheme (which as of the 1st of May is no longer valid) was essentially a limited reopening for certain destinations only: Phuket, Ko Samui, Ko Pha-Ngan, Ko Tao, Krabi, Phang Nga, Chonburi & Trat. You were able to stay in one of these locations for 7 days, and after a PCR test, tourists were allowed to travel around Thailand freely.

The “Test-and-Go” scheme was an alternative entry option, requiring travellers to test on arrival and spend 1 night within 5 hours’ travel time from their entry airport. There was also the necessity for a PCR tet on day 5 or 6 of travel. These two systems were replaced by the Thailand Pass on the 1st of May 2022.

I'm thinking of travelling to other countries in Southeast Asia as part of my trip. Where can I find more information?

That’s great! We keep an up-to-date list of entry requirements for Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan and even South Korea, so make sure to check it out.

Get in touch and we can help you navigate all this!

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