Thailand has not yet opened its borders to tourism despise the country seeming to have almost won their fight against the COVID-19. For those who are thinking to travel to Thailand and wonder how to make it, we have made this article from the questions that we are often asked.
1. Who are allowed to enter Thailand?
During this outbreak, only non-Thai nationals who are qualified in one of the categories, according to the notification of the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand dated 2 July 2020, are able to apply for a Certificate of Entry (COE) to enter the Kingdom of Thailand.
List of categories of persons who are eligible to enter Thailand:
- Persons on diplomatic or consular missions or under international organizations, or representatives of foreign governments or agencies performing their duties in Thailand, including their spouses, parents or children
- Non-Thai nationals who are spouses, parents or children of Thai nationals
- Non-Thai nationals who have certificate of residence or have been permitted to take up residency in Thailand, including their spouses and children.
- Non-Thai nationals who have work permit or have been granted permission to work in Thailand in accordance with Thai laws, including their spouses or children
- Non-Thai nationals who are students of educational establishments in Thailand approved by Thai authorities, including their parents or guardians, except for students of non-formal schools such as language schools, diving school, boxing schools etc. in accordance with laws on private schools or of any other similar private educational establishments.
- Non-Thai nationals who have a valid Thailand Elite Card. However, you must get the approval from related Governmental authorities before applying for COE. You need to contact Thailand Privilege Card Co., Ltd. directly to get the approval.
- Non-Thai nationals who need to receive medical treatment in Thailand, including their accompanying persons, except for treatment for COVID-19. You must get the approval from Ministry of Public Health of Thailand (MOPH) before applying for COE.
- Non-Thai nationals who wish to enter Thailand for media production or filming. You must get the permission from Thailand Film Office of Department of Tourism, Ministry of Tourism and Sports before applying for COE.
- For Thailand long stay / retirement visa (O-A & O-X)
- Non-Thai nationals who hold valid APEC Card, ONLY people travelling from low risk countries
- Non-Thai nationals who hold valid Special Tourist Visa (STV)
- Non-Thai nationals who hold valid Tourist Visa (TR)
- Non-Thai nationals who have Visa Exemption
2. I am eligible to enter Thailand. What to do next?
You have to obtain a proper Thai visa (if they do not already have one) and apply for a Certificate of Entry (COE) at the Royal Thai Embassy/Royal Thai Consulate-General in your country or in which you are living or stranded prior to traveling to Thailand as well as to comply with certain requirements.
3. I already have a visa or re-entry permit. Do I still need to get the Certificate of Entry?
Yes, the Certificate of Entry (COE) is required. Everyone, both Thai and non-Thai wishing to enter Thailand must obtain the Certificate of Entry from the Thai Embassy/Consulate-General prior to entering the country.
Keep in mind that a COE and a visa alone do not grant permission to enter Thailand. You need to prepare more documents that need to be presented at the port of embarkation and upon entry into Thailand as well.
4. What are required documents for the COE application?
General required documents for all applicants are as follows:
- The bio data (photo) page of passport.
- The visa page or re-entry stamp page of passport.
- Air ticket or e-ticket reservation document.
- A completed Declaration Form.
- Health insurance with a minimum coverage of 100,000 USD, covering the whole intended period of stay. The insurance must state explicitly that it covers the medical treatment related to COVID-19.
- A reservation document of required period for quarantine at Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ) or Alternative Local Quarantine (ALQ) hotels, except for Medical treatment purpose.
For more information about how to apply for COE check here: Certificate of Entry (COE) to Thailand
5. What is STV?
STV or Special Tourist Visa is a new visa program during COVID-19 for long stay foreign tourists to rescue the tourism industry. This visa will let you stay in Thailand for 90 days and can be extended up to 270 days.
STV is only available for visitors from low-risk countries according to the Ministry of Public Health. They must undergo all procedures and provide documents as required under the scheme and upon entering Thailand, they must undergo COVID-19 testing and enter Alternative State Quarantine for 14 days – the same rules that apply to Thai nationals who return from overseas.
Find more information about this type of Thailand visa here: Thailand Special Tourist Visa (STV)
6. Do I have to be quarantined once entering Thailand?
7. What is Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ)?
Alternative State Quarantine or ASQ is a mandatory self-paid quarantine for Thai or non-Thai nationals. The cost varies depending on the type of facility. ASQ package at the hotels basically include the cost of 3 meals, airport transfers and COVID-19 tests. If you will be tested positive for COVID-19, the partner hospital will be responsible for checking your health and taking care of you.
Due to the high demand and limited number of ASQ facilities, it is advised to book ASQ as soon as you know the arrival date. The regularly updated list of government-designated facilities is here: Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ)
Wondering what the different between ASQ and ALQ is? Find it out here: Thailand Alternative State Quarantine ASQ & ALSQ
8. What is a Fit to Fly Health Certificate?
Fit to Fly Health Certificate is a certificate confirming that you are healthy to take a flight according to the international rules and regulations. It must be issued no more than 72 hours before departure.
The important information that needs to be shown on the Fit to fly certificate is:
- Letterhead/ Logo showing the name of the hospital or clinic
- Name of the Doctor/Physician/Nurse/Healthcare provider
- Medical license number
The sample of Fit to Fly can be found here: Fit to Fly Health Certificate
Update 1 April 2021! Starting from 1 April 2021 Fit to Fly Certificate is no longer needed when traveling to Thailand!
9. How can I fly to Thailand?
Regarding flights to Thailand, the normal commercial passenger flights to Thailand have been suspended until further notice. Nevertheless, the Thai Government organizes repatriation flights to Thailand on a regular basis and allow usage of the semi commercial flights so you have 2 options for entering Thailand.
By repatriation flights organized by the Royal Thai Embassy.
Various airlines have been scheduled for conducting the repatriation flights. You need to check for announcements on repatriation flights regularly at the embassy and register for a seat in repatriation flight to Thailand. The Embassy will consider a request to obtain a seat in repatriation flight to Thailand on a case by case basis, considering the urgency and available seat quota in repatriation flight. This option might need a long wait.
By semi-commercial flights
The semi-commercial flights are allowed to bring entitled passengers to Bangkok regularly. You need to contact the airlines for buying the tickets. The list of semi-commercial flights approved for transporting entitled passengers to Thailand can be found here: Semi-Commercial Flights to Thailand
10. What to do before the flight?
Get COVID-19-Free Health Certificate by RT-PCR test (not less than 72 hours before departure)
Get Fit to Fly Certificate (not less than 72 hours before departure) (no longer needed!)
11. What documents to present upon checking-in and upon entry into Thailand?
- The passenger’s passport with visa page or re-entry permit
- Certificate of Entry (COE) issued by the Embassy or Consulate-General
- Declaration Form (completed with signature)
- Health insurance policy covering all expenditures of medical treatments, including COVID-19, with the coverage of 100,000 USD
- T8 form
- Fit to Fly Health Certificate, issued no more than 72 hours before departure (no longer needed!)
- COVID-19 negative test result (RT-PCR), issued no more than 72 hours before departure
12 What measures are required upon entry into Thailand?
All travelers arriving in Thailand are requested to submit a T8 Form upon their entry.
Upon entry into Thailand, all travelers will be required to undergo a medical check-up performed by medical personnel designated by the Thai authorities, and stay for the set period of quarantine at an Alternative State Quarantine (ASQ) or Thailand Alternative Local Quarantine (ALQ).
13. When will Thailand be open for tourists?
There is no information yet. The updated information on any changes in regulations of entry to Thailand should be checked with Thai embassy or consulate in your country.