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Thailand has reopened its Test & Go program for vaccinated travelers to be able to bypass mandatory quarantines, expecting the program to welcome between 200,000 to 300,000 travelers this month alone.
According to Bloomberg, the country has proven resilient after the few years of the pandemic, growing its vaccination rates and closing its quarantine-free entry program when the Omicron variant was first discovered back in December.
The new reopening extends the program to apply to all vaccinated travelers from any country; previously, it was only available for travelers from a list of sixty countries.
Thailand is expecting to welcome about 5 million visitors this year, with the majority of travelers coming from the U.S. and Europe. That number could rise to 9 million if Chinese and Indian travelers also use the Test & Go program.
The Test & Go program requires an application with full vaccination or at least one dose for children between 12 and 17, or a recovery certificate for adults. All travelers must also provide proof of a recent negative RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours of traveling to Thailand, as well as test again on day one and day five after entering Thailand. A travel insurance plan with COVID-19 protection worth at least $50,000, proof of payment for at least two nights of accommodations and downloading the government tracking app MorChana are also required.
"It's a fine balance between tourism recovery and public health," said Marisa Sukosol Nunbhakdi, president of the Thai Hotels Association. "We have to create confidence among the Thai society as there's still a large group of people hesitant about foreign travelers. If other nations are still hesitant they can come and look at the Thai Test & Go model."
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Lacey Pfalz is a freelance Associate Writer for TravelPulse. When she's not writing about traveling, she's often found fussing...
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