Thailand Just Reopened Its Most Iconic Beach Spot & Fully-Vaccinated Canadians Are Invited

There are some rules you'd need to follow, though!

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The beach is calling! In an effort to boost tourism in Thailand, the local government is inviting fully-vaccinated foreign travellers to the iconic island of Phuket — including Canadians.

The "Phuket Sandbox" program, which launched on July 1, allows fully vaccinated travellers from certain countries to vacation (without quarantining) on the popular island destination.

While fully-vaccinated guests won't be required to isolate upon their arrival in Phuket, they will be expected to comply with a list of rules designed to keep visitors and locals as safe as possible during the pandemic.

Who can visit right now?

Only visitors from countries considered "low" or "medium" risk are allowed to visit right now.

The list currently includes most of Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Britain and Canada and the U.S., among a few others.

It's worth noting that the Government of Canada continues to "strongly advise" against all non-essential travel overseas, even for fully vaccinated Canadians.

That said, fully vaccinated Canadians will be permitted to skip several travel restrictions upon their return home if they do decide to go abroad.

What do tourists need to visit Phuket?

All travellers must provide an eligible vaccine certificate, in addition to a negative COVID-19 test (taken within 72 hours of departure).

They will also need to show proof of a medical insurance policy (of no less than $100,000 USD) that covers their whole vacation.

Proof of payment for a two-week stay and necessary COVID-19 tests must also be submitted to officials.

"In the case that the length of stay is less than 14 days, travellers must present a confirmed flight ticket out of Thailand and payment confirmation for accommodation and RT-PCR tests at hotels that cover their intended duration of stay," the Tourism Authority of Thailand adds.

A Certificate of Entry (obtained from the local government) must also be approved before entering Thailand and travellers must prove they spent the preceding 21 days in an approved low-risk or medium-risk country.

Can travellers leave Phuket?

Upon arrival, visitors must undergo a health screening and download an app called ThailandPlus — similar to the ArriveCAN app used in Canada.

They must take a COVID-19 test and await results at their hotel. Additional tests must be taken on day 6 or 7, and on day 12 or 13 if a traveller is staying longer.

Travellers who've tested negative can explore the island freely and can move on to other parts of Thailand after 14 days.

Everyone must continue to follow local social distancing regulations and wear face masks where required in public spaces.

Before you get going, check our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

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