Travelling to Thailand will soon become significantly simpler, with some major changes announced by the authorities at today’s CCSA meeting.
From 1 May 2022, Thailand will do away with on-arrival PCR testing and the mandatory one-night hotel booking requirement for fully vaccinated travellers. Travel insurance coverage will be reduced to US$10,000, while the Thailand Pass application process will also be simplified.
This means that travellers will have freedom of movement from the time they land, and can take any mode of transport from the airport to their hotel (or even hit the town right away!).
It also means that a round-trip journey from Singapore will involve only a single ART, taken prior to returning to Singapore (which itself will be scrapped from 26 April).
Thailand to simplify arrivals process from 1 May
|Till 30 April||From 1 May|
|Day 5 test||Self-ATK||None|
|Hotel booking||Min. 1-night||Not required|
|Transport to hotel||Private transport only||Any transport permitted|
|Travel insurance |
(COVID-19 medical expenses)
From 1 May 2022, fully vaccinated arrivals in Thailand will no longer be required to take a PCR test on arrival. While it was initially rumoured that they would take ATKs instead (what we call an ART in Singapore), that hasn’t come to pass either, probably due to the logistical nightmare of having thousands of passengers hanging around the airport waiting for their results.
The Day 5 self-administered ATK requirement will also be scrapped. Instead, travellers are “recommended” to take a self-administered ATK if they have symptoms, and report the results if required through the MorChana app.
Since there’s no more PCR test result to wait for, the requirement for a mandatory 1-night booking at an AQ/SHA Extra+ hotel will also be removed, as will the requirement to book a private airport transfer. Fully vaccinated arrivals can now take any mode of transport they wish from the airport to the hotel.
Thailand will also cut the minimum travel insurance requirement from US$20,000 to US$10,000 for COVID-19 medical expenses.
While the much-despised Thailand Pass will survive for a little longer, the application process will be simplified, with travellers only required to submit their vaccination certificate and insurance certificate.
Here’s a summary of what travel requirements will look like from 1 May 2022, with the usual caveat that nothing is confirmed until the information is published in the Royal Gazette.
|🇹🇭 Thailand Test & Go Requirements|
(from 1 May 2022)
How has travel to Thailand evolved so far?
If you’re having difficulty keeping track of all the changes, here’s a quick guide to how the travel process to Thailand has evolved since the start of 2022.
|🇹🇭 Changelog: Travel to Thailand|
|1 Feb 2022|
|1 Mar 2022|
|1 Apr 2022|
|1 May 2022|
With any luck, we’ll soon be waving goodbye to the Thailand Pass requirement altogether!
I’m also hoping that the mandatory travel insurance requirement will be dropped, not because I don’t believe in travel insurance (you should definitely buy it), but because the Thailand Pass portal is notoriously finnicky with documentation, and not all policies provide a nice little one page certificate stating the amount of COVID-19 coverage.
Singapore-Thailand travel: Total testing costs
|⚕️ Testing: Singapore-Thailand Travel|
|🇹🇭 Thailand||2 days before departure (ART)*||From S$9|
|*Children aged 2 or under in the current calendar year are exempt. Exemptions may apply for recently recovered travellers who are fully vaccinated|
Singapore will scrap its pre-departure test requirement for fully vaccinated travellers starting from 26 April 2022.
Until then, Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents and Long Term Passholders have the option of taking a remotely-supervised tele-ART as their pre-departure test.
Travellers who have recently recovered from COVID-19 may be exempt from the pre-departure test requirement, provided they meet the following conditions:
- Fully vaccinated
- Present a positive COVID-19 PCR or professionally-administered ART dated between 7-90 days before departure for Singapore, or a medical discharge memo featuring date of infection between 7-90 days before departure for Singapore
Either document in (2) must mention the traveller’s full name, and identity number or date of birth.
If you contracted COVID-19 in Singapore and got your infection recorded in the HealthHub system, you may use that as proof to enter Singapore without pre-departure testing during the 7-90 day window. Do note that the result must be tagged with “licensed provider” as shown below; “self-administered” results are not accepted.
If in doubt, refer to the ICA’s self-check tool to determine your eligibility for vaccinated-recovered traveller concessions.
Thailand will be scrapping all testing for fully vaccinated travellers from 1 May 2022, which means that Thailand Pass and travel insurance requirements aside, a trip to Thailand will be more or less back to pre-COVID days.
We should be receiving news on the simplified Thailand Pass process soon as well, so stay tuned for that.