It’s one of the most asked questions online over the last year and I will try to give you some insight into what the future has in store for travelers wishing to come to the Kingdom.
Thailand closed its borders to International tourism back in April 2020 after an increase of COVID infections within the country. It was the right thing to do under the circumstances and the government must be praised for its swift action. The closure of borders and district lockdowns curbed the spread of the virus and saved lives.
Never in my wildest dreams would I have imagined that nearly a year later the borders would be still shut and the hospitality industry decimated. It truly has become a sad state of affairs and things need to change in order to bring back economic growth and jobs.
With the development of a COVID vaccine, this has to be seen as a “game-changer” for tourism and for Thailand. Talk has already begun on reopening to vaccinated tourists but this will not be something immediately taken on board.
Currently, all travelers arriving in Thailand must go through a process to gain a certificate of entry from their respective Thai embassy and also undertake a 14-day quarantine in a designated ASQ Hotel (alternative state quarantine). This is done to ensure Thailand remains a low COVID country.
So when will it reopen? My best guess will be late September / October 2021 and there are a number of reasons behind this date.
1. Thailand hasn’t begun inoculating its own population yet. A significant number of people in high tourist areas need to be vaccinated in order to allow vaccine tourists into the country.
2. Most countries have only started vaccinating their population.
3. Time will be needed to develop a trustworthy vaccination passport.
4. The government will need time to prepare the country for the return of tourists and the possibility of fear in the local community.
5. Airlines need time to prepare routes and aircraft as many have been placed in storage and would not be fit to fly as of today.
The reopening of the borders is in sight for travelers and soon people will be able to once again enjoy a cool Chang Beer, a delicious Phad Thai while sitting looking at the stunning Andaman Ocean.