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Phuket Sandbox tourists reminded to have COVID insurance

Phuket Sandbox tourists reminded to have COVID insurance

PHUKET: The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) Phuket Office has issued a reminder to any visitors under the Phuket Sandbox scheme to have the correct insurance policy in place which covers them in the event of a COVID-19 infection while on the island.

CoronavirusCOVID-19Vaccinetourism
By The Phuket News

Wednesday 21 July 2021, 02:58PM


The TAT Phuket also stated it has contacted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Office of Insurance Commission to ensure that tourists wishing to visit the island have the correct insurance cover in place before they are issued with a Certificate Of Entry (COE).

As part of a press conference broadcast live this morning (July 21), TAT Phuket Office Director Nanthasiri Ronnasiri raised the issue as it was confirmed a British tourist became the latest to test positive for COVID-19, taking the total to 19 thus far under the Sandbox scheme.

“The problem we have found with some of the tourists who have entered Phuket under the Sandbox scheme and tested positive so far is that the insurance policies they have do not cover COVID-19 treatment,” Director Nanthasiri said. She did not, however, specify how many of the 19 thus far infected did not have the correct insurance.

“Before applying for a COE, tourists must have an insurance policy that covers COVID-19 treatment to ensurethey do not need to pay for any treatment themselves. We urge all tourists wishing to visit Phuket to ensure this is in place,” Director Nanthasiri continued.

“The TAT Phuket office has contacted relevant officials at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Office of Insurance Commission to clarify this condition and ensure we work together to find the best solution,” she added.

No additional information was provided on how COEs had been issued without an applicant having the correct insurance cover in place.

Providing a broader update on statistics, Director Nanthasiri explained that from the date the scheme launched on July 1 through to yesterday (July 20), a total 8,981 arrivals have been confirmed via the Sandbox scheme.

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Excluding Thai nationals, the top five nationalities that make up this total number are American, British, Israeli, German and French respectively.

“We estimate the average stay of a sandbox tourist in Phuket to be 11 nights,” Director Nanthasiri said.

“Some people stay only for seven days and return to their countries,” she added.

“Income generated from these tourists is in excess of B400 million. This figure is calculated using hotel room rates and other associated costs, excluding the cost of flights. However, right now hotel room costs are considered low.”

Phuket Marine Office Chief Nachaphong Pranit explained that between July 1 and 20, a total 2,358 tourists, or about 27% of all Sandbox arrivals, taken 503 boat trips via piers and marinas on the island.

From July 14, a total of 101 sandbox tourists have passed through the Phuket checkpoint to visit other provinces, commented Phuket Provincial Police Commander Maj Gen Pornsak Nuannoo.

“However, when they return to Phuket they must fully prepare documents to satisfy the entry requirements under the Phuket provincial order,” he warned.

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Dick | 22 July 2021 - 17:56:34

Health insurance from almost all countries rarely mention covid as that's covered unless specified otherwise.  As far as I know, Thailand is the only country that manufactures covid insurance and require specific mention  a requirement for issuance of COE for tourist.  Good strategy??  Number of tourist arrival will tell.  Haha

Espanol | 22 July 2021 - 14:15:54

They must have Covid-19 insurance to get COE from Thai embassy, so everyone in the sandbox has one. 

Dick | 22 July 2021 - 05:17:18

Fact is: most health insurance issued before covid pay covid claims.  Suggest tourist to check with their insurance company first if they want peace of mind.  Thailand should not force tourist to buy into their poor value covid insurance designed for tourist.  Customer Choice!!

Kurt | 22 July 2021 - 02:54:27

In many countries people can get a travel insurance, but not a specific Covid insurance. In my home country I can't get any insurance as I officially left there and live permanent in Thailand. Have a international health insurance, but they not want to insure for Covid-19 as long Phuket keep refusing to vaccinate me.

Dick | 21 July 2021 - 20:43:49

tourist arrival is already pathetically low even though you allowed some come in without covid insurance.  If you implement that policy seriously, the box is doomed!!!

DeKaaskopp | 21 July 2021 - 19:41:50

And the incompetent governor does everything to give those tourists a hard time.They are not allowed to have some fun in the evening.The incompetent governor doesn't even care a tiny bit about those who work in the entertainment sector.He does everything to boycott the "sandbox scheme".Pathetic!

Dick | 21 July 2021 - 17:31:29

This covid insurance is actually a joke.  Tourist that get vaccinated, even when infected, don't get seriously I'll.  Yet, the cost is ridiculously high..!!!

keithB | 21 July 2021 - 15:21:56

Sorry but there is no need to remind us 
We submitted all documents to get a C of E   If someone is here in the sandbox with the wrong insurance it must have been approved 
My paperwork was checked many times 

Espanol | 21 July 2021 - 15:20:52

“The problem we have found with some of the tourists who have entered Phuket under the Sandbox scheme and tested positive so far is that the insurance policies they have do not cover COVID-19 treatment,” Director Nanthasiri said.

How is it possible if before applying for a COE, tourists must have an insurance policy that covers COVID-19 treatment?

 

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