Thailand scraps PCR tests to boost tourism

Thailand plans to scrap the mandatory on-arrival Covid-19 PCR test for foreign visitors starting from May, as the country steps up efforts to lure more tourists back.

The PCR tests will be replaced with the quicker ART tests at airports, Thailand’s deputy health minister Sathit Pitutecha said on Friday, after a meeting with the Covid-19 panel.

Baggage claim area at Suvarnabhumi Airport

Vaccinated travellers will also no longer need to reserve a one-night hotel stay to secure visas, joining other countries such as the Philippines and Singapore in easing border restrictions.

The Test & Go scheme has been seen as a major deterrent for travellers, and the hospitality industry has long asked for the programme to be scrapped.

Thailand’s Covid task force will review the proposed visa relaxations again over the new few weeks.

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