Traveling to Phuket under the ‘Sandbox’ model

Since 1 July, vaccinated foreign tourists are allowed to travel to Phuket without quarantine requirements, under the “Phuket Sandbox” model.

Here is an overview of how things work and some useful links for planning your trip to Phuket.

Phuket sandbox overview

Reopening guidelines for Phuket

  • Foreign travelers coming from Low or medium Risk Countries will be allowed to enter without Quarantine. The List of the Low-risk countries to be published by the Ministry of Public health and will be updated frequently. They must also have already stayed in the said countries/regions no less than 21 days before the travel date.
  • Travelers must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 with a vaccine registered with the Thai FDA or approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) no less than 14 days before the travel date, and must have a vaccine certificate to verify their vaccination.

A list of WHO-approved vaccines can be found here.

Thai FDA approved vaccines per 18 June:

AstraZeneca
Moderna
Johnson & Johnson
Sinovac Biotech
Sinopharm

  • Children under 6 years of age are allowed when traveling with fully vaccinated parents or guardians.
  • Unvaccinated children between 6 years old and 18 years old will require a COVID test upon arrival in Thailand.
  • Travelers who have a history of COVID-19 infection must also be fully vaccinated no less than 14 days before the travel date.
  • All Travelers must have a Result of Negative RT PCR Test conducted within 72 Hours before their Departure from the Destination of Origin.
  • Travelers must have a COVID-19 health insurance policy (for the entire duration of their stay) with a minimum coverage of US$100,000.
  • Travelers who are qualified and have the required documents are advised to submit an application for a Certificate of Entry (COE) via www.entrythailand.go.th.

 

Hotel booking

All arrivals are required to stay in resorts or hotels that have Amazing Thailand Safety and Health Administration (SHA) Plus certification.  SHA is an indication that the hotel follows Thailand’s Safety and Health Association regulations. The ‘Plus’ designation indicates that at least 70% of the hotel’s staff have been vaccinated. A list of SHA+ certified hotels can be found here and here.

Note: The vaccination campaign is an ongoing process so, some hotels are certified but not listed (yet). If you can not find your favorite hotel on this list, it is best to inquire with them directly about their SHA+ certification.

 

Flights to Phuket

Several airlines including British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Etihad Airways, Qatar Airways and Emirates, have announced to fly to Phuket at least once a week from July 1, according to information shared with major tour operators by the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT). Flight schedules are also subject to change so it is best to check with your airline directly.

Arrival

Upon arrival at the airport, guests will have to undergo the standards customs and immigration procedures and get tested for COVID 19 (RT PCR TEST). Transfer from the airport to the hotel is arranged by the SHA+ hotel.

The result of the test will be generated within 12 hours after conducting the test. Guests need to stay in their room to await the test results.
If the test result is negative, then the guest can enjoy his stay in Phuket and move freely around the island. If the test result is positive, the guest will be transferred to the hospital.

In case of staying 14 nights or longer, a second and third test will be required on day 6 and day 12, however, guests do not need to stay in their room to await the test results.

Guests are required to download and install the ThailandPlus application on their phone.

 

COVID -19 Insurance

Travelers must have a COVID-19 health insurance policy (for the entire duration of their stay) with a minimum coverage of US$100,000.
In some cases you may be able to use your regular travel insurance for this but your policy should explicitly mention the COVID-19 coverage.

There are many companies offering COVID-19 insurance specifically for entering Thailand. It is easily arranged online.
Here are just a few:

 Mr Prakan

Axa

Luma

Travel2thai.com lists several insurers.

 

Traveling to other Thai destinations

For travelers who wish to visit Phuket only, no minimum stay is required. Return flights must leave directly from Phuket airport.

Travelers who wish to continue their journey to other Thai destinations are required to show proof that they have completed a 14-night in Phuket. Other required documents may be required, depending on the respective province of destination.

The start of “Phuket Sandbox” does not mean that it is not possible to enter Thailand through other airports, like Bangkok. However, traveling into Thailand outside the “Sandbox” scheme, you will be required to quarantine for 14 days regardless to the country of origin or vaccination status.

Plans to reopen other parts of Thailand are already under consideration.

 

Read more:

More articles about Phuket

Phuket reopening 1 July still on course

Top Dive Sites of Phuket, Thailand

Great pictures of Phuket