From 1 October 2022 to 31 March 2023, the period of stay for travellers from countries/territories entitled to visa exemption will be extended to 45 days, and to 30 days for those eligible for a Visa on Arrival.
Thailand will end its nationwide COVID-19 Emergency Decree (state of emergency) on 30 September 2022 (Friday), as it transitions to a post-pandemic phase from that date.
This move comes as the nation reclassifies COVID-19 from 'a dangerous communicable disease' to 'a communicable disease under surveillance' from 1 October 2022 (Saturday), the Centre of COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA) announced on Friday (23 September 2022).
Alongside this, the CCSA announced a series of generic measures, as well as measures for international travellers entering the country to note:
- Travellers to Thailand will no longer need to show their COVID-19 vaccination certificates or COVID-19 test results for entry.
- Those found to have been infected with the COVID-19 virus, with mild or no symptoms, and who are not part of the at-risk "609" group, will also no longer have to self-isolate. They are instead encouraged to strictly follow the DMHT (distancing, mask-wearing, handwashing, and temperature-checking) measures for five days. Those who are high-risk contacts will have to self-monitor for 10 days and conduct rapid antigen testing (ATK) on day five and day 10.
- The wearing of masks in crowded areas is still encouraged but no longer mandated. The general public is still urged to follow DMHT measures during the transition to the post-pandemic phase.
- The CCSA will extend the period of stay to 45 days for travellers from countries/territories entitled to visa exemption, and to 30 days for those eligible for a Visa on Arrival. This will be effective from 1 October 2022 to 31 March 2023.
- The national vaccination drive will focusing mainly on booster shots for children aged five to 11, medical personnel, and the high-risk "608" group. However, every fully-vaccinated person can still receive their booster shots at their local vaccination centre.
- The Central Vaccination Center at Bang Sue Grand Station will continue offering free booster shots daily from 9am to 4pm, until 30 September 2022. Thais will be required to show an ID card, while non-Thais will be required to show their certificate of identity or passport. Those who wish to be inoculated can make an appointment in advance via mobile, or simply by walking in at Gate No.2.
As shared by the Tourism Authority of Thailand following the above announcement, the ending of the COVID-19 Emergency Decree, which has been in place 19 times since 25 March 2020, will result in the CCSA being automatically dissolved, and all the regulations, announcements, and orders issued by the Prime Minister and the Cabinet under the decree be revoked.
Since the pandemic, Thailand has gradually reopened to international tourism starting in July 2021 with the Phuket Sandbox, Samui Plus, and 7+7 Extension programmes. This was followed by a four-phase reopening timeline from October 2021 to January 2022.
The nation entered the stage of full reopening from 1 July 2022, with the removal of the Thailand Pass registration scheme, and foreign nationals only required to show proof of vaccination or a negative ATK test result within 72 hours of travel.
Lead image / Shutterstock
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