Several countries have gone back on alert in response to China’s decision to open its borders for the first time in about three years. In preparation for an influx of tourists, Thailand has reinstated COVID-19 travel restrictions.

What are Thailand’s entry requirements?

The Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand (CAAT) announced that beginning early on Monday, all international arrivals will need to show proof of vaccination or a letter attesting to their recovery from COVID-19 within six months.

Travellers who have not gotten the vaccination are required to present a medical letter justifying their exemption. Children under 18 years old are also not required to show proof of vaccination.

The CAAT announced that airlines will be in charge of verifying documents before passengers board and have a published list of the number of doses needed for various COVID-19 vaccine kinds on its website (although it was last updated in June 2022).

The Health Ministry requires foreigners entering Thailand with a negative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test result to produce proof of COVID-19 treatment health insurance. For vaccinated travellers, travel insurance is highly recommended.

Thankfully, there is still no need to obtain a Thailand Pass or Certificate of Entry.

The new policy will be in place at least through the end of January, according to CAAT.

Although Thailand lifted the vaccination restriction in October 2022, it has been reinstated now that China has relaxed its zero-COVID policy and the border is once again open.

Thai nationals and transit travellers are exempt from the entry requirements change.

The full guideline on the Thailand travel restrictions can be found here.

Meanwhile, Malaysia has implemented measures to screen travellers arriving at international airports from other nations.

There will be mandatory temperature checks for all international visitors to Malaysia. Those who have visited China within the previous 14 days will also be required to take the rapid antigen test (RTK-Ag test) upon their return (RTK-Ag test). If the traveller tests positive for COVID-19, the samples taken for the RTK-Ag test will be forwarded for genome testing.

*Editor’s note: The information above is correct at the time of writing and publishing. The Thai government has since rescinded the requirement pending a review.