Thailand Entry and Travel Requirements
Thailand Entry Requirements are the set of regulations determining what all the persons wishing to visit Thailand must do to enter the country without any issues. These regulations also specify types of documentation that one planning to enter Thailand must obtain prior to travel.
The majority of travelers arriving in Thailand must hold a valid passport and a visa. The passport should be valid for at least six months from the date of planned entry to Thailand. Depending on your nationality, travel purpose, and the desired amount of time to spend in Thailand, you may need to apply for a different type of visa for Thailand.
At the moment, the Thailand visa policy states that nationals of around 60 countries in the world are permitted to enter Thai territory without a visa. Depending on their nationality, they may stay in Thailand from 2 weeks (14 days) up to 3 months (90 days).
Citizens of other 20 countires are eligible for an electronic visa for Thailand issued for short-term tourism-related purposes.
Moreover, 160 other nationalities must apply for a regular Thai visa in person. The regular visa may be obtained only directly from the nearest embassy or consulate of Thailand. Application for an embassy or consular visa may require providing supporting documentation. The necessary documents may differ according to the requested visa type, e.g., business visa, study visa, etc.
Due to the global Covid-19 pandemic, the Thai authorities also enforced some protective measures to minimize and control the spread of new coronavirus cases and allow foreign visitors to travel to Thailand safely. Foreign travelers who plan to visit Thailand soon should check on the recent entry requirements before the planned trip.
Important note: The entry rules concerning pre-departure testing, quarantine, vaccination, and covid-related documentation may change at short notice. The Thailand entry requirements were last updated on Jan. 10, 2023. For more information on what has changed, check here.
Who can enter Thailand
Currently, Thailand allows entry both for vaccinated and unvaccinated foreign travelers who need to meet certain requirements. They can travel to Thailand if they qualify for one of the following Thai schemes:
Test and Go: only for travelers from eligible countries who must reside in Thailand for at least 21 consecutive days;
Sandbox: for travelers from any country who will stay in the Sandbox Area for 7 days and then can travel further within Thailand;
- Alternative Quarantine: for travelers from all countries who are subject to quarantine and then can travel further around Thailand.
The first two quarantine-free entry schemes are dedicated to fully-vaccinated travelers who wish to travel to Thailand, while the third one allows entry also to non-vaccinated persons. They, however, must undergo quarantine after arrival.
Documents check-list for entering Thailand
Every traveler to Thailand needs to have the following documents:
- Vaccination certificate (if vaccinated)
- PCR test performed within 72 hours of travel
- Thailand visa or eVisa (if eligible)
- Thailand Pass
- Insurance with minimum coverage of $ 10,000
Moreover, depending on the travel scheme, travelers will also need the following:
Test and Go Program
- fully paid SHA Extra+/AQ hotel accommodation proof for day 1 (including the first RT-PCR and airport transfer)
- 7-day booking confirmation in AQ hotel or SHA Extra+
Alternative Quarantine Program
- quarantine accommodation confirmation at AQ hotel
Since September 2021, eligible applicants from 37 countries can obtain the Thai tourist e-Visa which is a single-entry electronic permit enabling a 60-day stay in Thailand.
There are nine different types of e-Visa to Thailand that can be obtained entirely online. The application process should not take more than 15 minutes but the form must be submitted 15 business days before the intended departure date.
Thailand Pass system
During the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone who plans to travel to Thailand needs to have a Thailand Pass, which is a web-based system created to facilitate entry to the country. Thanks to the Thailand Pass travelers can go through the entire process of submitting travel documents much faster and easier.
The application process should be started in advance, preferably 5 to 7 business days prior to the scheduled departure date.
Testing, vaccination, and quarantine requirements
All travelers to Thailand, including Thai nationals, are required to provide a negative RT-PCR test report conducted within 72 hours of the scheduled flight from their country of departure.
Travelers who arrive in Thailand are subject to post-arrival coronavirus testing whose cost is included in hotel booking. Depending on the entry scheme, they need to take:
- Test&Go: one RT-PCR test upon arrival (on Day 1)
- Sandbox: two RT-PCR tests (on arrival date and on Day 6 or 7 of stay)
- Alternative Quarantine: two RT-PCR tests (on arrival date and on Day 8 or 9 of stay)
Thailand allows entry both to vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Unvaccinated travelers may enter Thailand under an alternative quarantine program.
Vaccinated travelers may choose either Test&Go or Sandbox program to enter Thailand.
International travelers, including returning Thau nationals and foreign residents aged 18 or more who enter Thailand under Test&Go or Sandbox scheme must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Moreover, the vaccine must be approved by the World Health Organization and Thailand’s Ministry of Public Health. At least 14 days should elapse from receiving the final dose of coronavirus vaccination before the planned date of travel in order to be recognized as fully vaccinated. Those who choose the Alternative Quarantine as their entry scheme to enter Thailand, if vaccinated, will benefit from the shorter quarantine after arrival.
Currently, Thailand accepts 10 various manufacturers of COVID-19 vaccine:
- Pfizer–BioNTech or Comirnaty (Pfizer Inc. and BioNTech) 2 doses/3-week interval;
- Moderna (Moderna Inc). – 2 doses/4-week interval;
- AstraZeneca or Covishield (AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford, SK Bioscience (South Korea), Siam Bioscience, and Serum Institute of India (Covishield)) – 2 doses/ 4-12-week interval;
- CoronaVac (Sinovac Biotech Ltd) – 2 doses/2-4-week interval
- Janssen or Janssen/Ad26.COV2.S (Johnson & Johnson Services, Inc.) – 1 dose;
- Sinopharm or COVILO (Sinopharm Co., Ltd.) – 2 doses / 3-4-week interval;
- Covaxin (Bharat Biotech International Limited) – 2 doses / 4-week interval;
- Sputnik V (the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology) – 2 doses – 3-week interval;
- Sputnik Light (Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology) – 1 dose (Sandbox scheme only);
- Medigen or MVC-COV1901 – 2 doses/4-week interval (Sandbox scheme only).
International travelers, both vaccinated and not vaccinated, who choose alternative quarantine schemes to enter Thailand need to undergo mandatory 10-day quarantine at the hotel located in Samut Prakan, Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, or Samui. After that, they will be able to travel to other parts of the country.
Those who are eligible for the Test&Go scheme need only to stay 1 night at the previously booked SHA+ or AQ hotel (or until they receive the negative post-arrival RT-PCR test result). In turn, the Sandbox scheme requires a traveler to book 7-night accommodation in a SHA+ hotel. Their travel is restricted to the Sandbox Area throughout this 1-week period but afterward, they can travel further.
Entry Rules for Children
Children aged 17 and under are allowed to travel to Thailand under the same scheme as their parents or legal guardians without needing to provide a vaccination certificate.
A mandatory RT-PCR test performed within 72 hours of departure is not required for children aged 5 and younger.
Transit through Thailand
Travelers who treat Thailand only as a tranist stop on their way to reach another destination do not need to register for a Thailand Pass. however, they need to purchase travel insurance with minimum coverage of 10,000 USD. Moreover, they must provide a negative RT-PCR COVID-19 test report performed maximally within 72 hours prior to the trip.
Restrictions may differ throughout the country. Thailand operates a color-coded zoning system that was introduced to reflect the coronavirus situation in particular Thai provinces.
The majority of Thai destinations were classified as ‘blue zones’ with relaxed restrictions.
Public places like museums, cinemas, spas, sport facilities, and other public establishments are operating under strict public health measures as well as the limited number of allowed visitors, which is 75 % of regular capacity.
Many types of entertainment venues located across the country, like nightclubs, remain closed.
Traveling between provinces has been resumed, including the operation of domestic flights both to and from high-risk areas.
Wearing masks is mandatory both indoors and outdoors under the penalty of a fine. Travelers should also be prepared for random temperature checks.
Travel Insurance policy
All foreign arrivals to Thailand are required to have a travel insurance policy purchased before departure. The travel insurance with COVID-19 coverage must be submitted during the application for the Thai visa and Thailand Pass. Its minimum coverage is $ 10,000 and must cover the entire duration of a traveler’s stay in Thailand.