Traveling to Thailand-The Thailand Pass
COVID has created many changes in traveling, and I’m happy that many countries have started to open their borders to travelers. As I’ve mentioned before, now more than ever, traveling takes planning. As of November 1, 2021, Thailand has reopened to travelers with a no-quarantine option. Here are a few tips if you plan to travel to Thailand.
No quarantine entry does not genuinely mean quarantine-free. Thailand is happy to accept fully vaccinated travelers under three programs. Test and go, Sandbox, and Alternative quarantine. In any program, travelers must complete at least a one-day quarantine. With the Test and Go program, travelers must stay at least one night in an approved hotel and wait for their pre-paid COVID test results to return as negative. Only a negative result will allow the traveler to move around inside Thailand. With the Sandbox program, travelers must stay in a sandbox destination within Thailand for seven days before moving through other parts of Thailand after a negative COVID test result. With the Alternative program, travelers must stay for 7 to 10 days in an approved hotel and test negative before being free to leave the hotel.
The Thailand pass is required for all travelers to Thailand, both citizens, and foreigners. It ensures that travelers meet all the entry requirements before arrival in Thailand. It is free to apply for the Thailand Pass, but the system is rather cumbersome and rigorous. Some service providers can complete the process for travelers for a fee, and I highly recommend it for those who do not want the stress. The response time is from 3 to 7 days to get a response, so I highly recommend preparing well in advance.
Thailand Pass requirements.
The requirements for the Thailand pass include
- Proof of a WHO-approved vaccination
- Proof of at least $50,000 U.S. of COVID insurance
- Payment confirmation of one night’s stay at an approved hotel
- Copy of flight booking
- Copy of visa, if required
- To be able to travel to Thailand, travelers will also need,
- A negative PCR test to be taken at least 72 hours before departure
- Payment confirmation of the PCR test you will take after arriving in Thailand
- Thailand’s MorChana App to record the results of your rapid test
- Cannot have visited any of the countries not on the approved list within the past 21 days.
In short, travel to Thailand is not as easy as it once was. The new Thailand Pass online registration system is not very easy to navigate. I found that some credentials had to be formatted correctly for the system to accept them. For example, some documents could be PDF, but others needed to be in Jpeg format. Even though I am an experienced traveler, it took me three tries before I could complete the process, in addition to two phone calls with over an hour of holding time.
Post-COVID travel has proven to be a bit daunting. Has it stopped you from traveling? I’d like to know.