TRAVEL NEWS – January 25, 2021: Tour operators in Thailand have floated the idea of luring inbound travelers with travel packages for both vaccination and vacation. Costs: more than 4000 euros
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Thailand reopens borders with strict visa policy
There will be a very strict visa policy to ensure the security measures. Thailand now allows visitors to apply for a Tourist Visa (TRV) or a Special Tourist Visa (STV) – both come with a mandatory 14-day quarantine at a government-approved facility.
Under the new protocols, travelers wishing to enter Thailand must also hold one of the above visas and a Certificate of Entrance (COE), which is a certificate of entry.
Tourists can opt for the visas according to the nature of their stay. The TRV is for tourists visiting Thailand for a short stay, while the STV is for long trips.
Holiday and vaccination in Thailand
The Tourism Council of Thailand (TCT), in which the Thai tourism industry has united, is also coming up with a new plan. Namely: Vacation and vaccination. The aim is to increase the number of foreign visitors. A special one-month package with 14 days of quarantine and a hotel combined with a COVID-19 vaccination. The expected price is 150.000 Baht per person, about 4000 Euro. Not included is a plane ticket to Thailand.
“After the vaccines are available, we will need a tourism plan by the second quarter of this year to create more demand,” said Chamnan Srisawat, chairman of the TCT. The plan aims to support the tourism industry in key destinations such as Phuket, Pattaya and Koh Samui, which rely heavily on the international market.
Vaccination holidays are booming business
There seems to be a growing international market for affluent healthy travelers trying to get vaccinated quickly. In the US, tens of thousands of people travel outside their home areas in search of the vaccinations, especially to Miami, where Disneyland is no longer the main attraction.
The combination of vaccination and holidays is also a booming business in Great Britain. The British go to Dubai, among other places, to be vaccinated against COVID-19. The cost is between £25.000 and £40.000. Included in that amount are first class airfare, lodging in five star hotels and even a trip to the Maldives.
Holiday vaccination plan
Thai authorities have made several suggestions in recent months to relaunch international tourism. For example, 'Travel Bubbles' and a special tourist visa (STV) were presented. However, the ideas have been rejected by the cabinet, stillborn or less successful than hoped. The STV has only attracted a few hundred instead of thousands of visitors in three months.
Thai travel agents are not yet enthusiastic about the holiday vaccination plan. They point out that Thailand is not internationally regarded as a Covid vaccine center. In addition, there is currently uncertainty about which vaccines are available and whether private hospitals have sufficient stock.
However, Chotechuang Soorangura, of NS Travel and Tours, believes that most people prefer to get vaccinated in their own country. "Thailand can better advertise itself as a wellness destination, for both health and wellness-oriented tourists and medical tourists seeking professional treatment."
Source: meetingpointazie.com en thephuketnews.com