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‘Travel bubbles’ plan tipped to be put on ice

‘Travel bubbles’ plan tipped to be put on ice

BANGKOK: Travel bubbles are likely to be delayed after several countries eyed for the scheme have seen a resurgence of COVID-19 cases, according to the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT).

COVID-19healthtourismeconomics
By Bangkok Post

Wednesday 8 July 2020, 09:01AM


A traveler at Don Mueang airport in Bangkok on Sunday. Restriction on international air transport travel is likely to prolong on the delay of ‘travel bubbles’. Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool

A traveler at Don Mueang airport in Bangkok on Sunday. Restriction on international air transport travel is likely to prolong on the delay of ‘travel bubbles’. Photo: Arnun Chonmahatrakool

CAAT Director-General Chula Sukmanop said even though talks about travel bubble arrangements are being thrashed out with a number of countries including China, Japan and South Korea, the scheme will be put on hold due to a spike in infections. He said Thailand will be closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation this month, reports the Bangkok Post.

The government has come up with a plan to launch travel bubbles with several countries with low coronavirus risk and initially the arrangements were to be adopted with the first group of international leisure travellers in August at the earliest.

Mr Chula said that local tourism is vital to rebuilding the country’s aviation industry and noted that demand for domestic travel is picking up after airlines resume operations and business operators launch promotional campaigns to boost travel.

He expressed confidence that further economic stimulus measures to be rolled out by the government will increase spending power and that the aviation and transport sectors will start to recover.

Transport Minister Saksayam Chidchob said on Tuesday (July 7) that public safety is the top priority for the government as it considers reopening the country to international travellers.

Thai Residential

Mr Saksayam called on airlines to wait for a clear policy from the government and the CAAT when asked about reports about airlines preparing to resume international flights in September.

Earlier Thira Woratanarat, an epidemiologist at Chulalongkorn University, urged the government to exercise extreme caution when considering travel bubble arrangements because the COVID-19 pandemic is still ravaging many parts of the world.

Sophon Iamsirithavorn, chief of the Communicable Disease Division, on Tuesday urged the public to keep their guard up even though the country has recorded no local cases of coronavirus for 43 consecutive days.

Meanwhile, Pha Muang Task Force is stepping up efforts to prevent migrant workers from sneaking into Thailand illegally to seek jobs, said task force commander Maj Gen Thanatpol Kosaisewi.

 

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Kurt | 09 July 2020 - 10:06:50

As business men, technicians and foreign medical patients ( sick people) are allowed now into Thailand, Thailand should allow foreigners. married with Thai, ( many have children ) to return to their home in Thailand too. They are not tourists!

maverick | 08 July 2020 - 13:40:03

Very selfish comments there are many farangs living here who need to get home for a variety of reasons including seeing sick or dying relatives - they are unable to travel because of these restrictions preventing them returning ‘home’ to Thailand 

LALALA | 08 July 2020 - 09:12:33

It is completely irrelevant if there are spikes of infections in other countries. As long LOS will insist on tourists tracking and implement this stupid 'villa quarantine' and other measures nobody will visit anyway....I personally do not care, let them suffer, less international tourists means less income for the Thai economy. I like that.

 

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