There’s no need to cancel or reschedule a vacation to Thailand because of the Covid pandemic. The Thai government has now introduced the Thailand Pass system as a free, internet-based way of easing the documentation process for travelers entering Thailand during the pandemic. Together with the Samui Sandbox and Kimpton Kitalay’s designation as a SHA+ certified hotel, the Thailand Pass enables Kimpton guests to enjoy a safe vacation in luxurious comfort during their stay on Koh Samui.
We’ll explain how the Thailand Pass, Samui Sandbox, and SHA+ hotel certification work in detail to ensure you have a smooth and trouble-free journey to Koh Samui to enjoy the vacation of your dreams at Kimpton Kitalay.
Thailand has recently introduced a program that supports the “Ease of Travel” protocol. This simplifies travel and reduces the number of documents you’ll have to produce to ensure entry and access to travel within Thailand.
The required documents are:
- Valid passport
- Flight booking confirmation
- Confirmed booking at an ASQ hotel or a SHA+ hotel (with a pre-booked RT-PCR test)
- Vaccination certificate
- COVID-19 health insurance certificate
Travelers can enter Thailand under the Thailand Pass whether or not they are vaccinated against COVID-19. But non-vaccinated travelers must undergo a mandatory quarantine of 10 nights in a certified ASQ or AQ hotel on arrival in Thailand before they’ll be permitted to travel around the country. Unvaccinated children under the age of 18 may travel with vaccinated parents without needing to quarantine.
Fully vaccinated adult travelers have a choice of two options upon entering the country. They can enter under the Test and Go program which means they must stay in their ASQ or SHA+ hotel room while awaiting the result of their RT-PCR test that was taken upon arrival. The other option is to enter the country under one of the Sandbox programs, including the Samui Sandbox. Sandbox programs were set up to facilitate the needed rebuilding of economies in areas dependent on tourism, including Koh Samui, Pattaya, and Phuket.
Under the Sandbox programs, travelers must quarantine in an accredited ASQ, AQ, or SHA+ quarantine hotel within the Sandbox borders before they’re allowed to travel around Thailand. However, they’ll be free to leave their room once they have received a negative result from their first PCR test that was administered upon arrival, but they must return to the hotel every night.
How to Apply for the Thailand Pass
The Thailand Pass system generates the QR Entry Code or Thailand Pass ID you’ll need to enter the country. During your vacation in Thailand, you should always carry a smartphone capable of accessing the internet. Thai SIM cards are available at the airport you fly into, and top-up cards are sold at most convenience stores around Thailand. A Thai SIM card is inexpensive and will save you paying international roaming charges.
You’ll need to register for the pass before booking your flight to Thailand. To register, access the Thailand Pass internet portal and enter your personal details. You’ll also need to upload images of the required documents listed above. After you submit your registration, you should receive a confirmation email within a few seconds. The full approval should then come within one to seven days. If you’re approved, you’ll receive an email with a QR code or Thailand Pass ID that you’ll use to enter Thailand.
The Samui Sandbox, or Samui Plus program, requires fully vaccinated travelers to stay on Koh Samui for at least 7 nights before they can travel elsewhere around Thailand. On the day you arrive at Samui Airport, you’ll be required to download the Samui Health Pass and Mor Chana applications. Officials at the airport will tell you which website to access to download them. You’ll then take your first RT-PCR test at the airport.
Next, you’ll be transferred from the airport to your SHA Extra+ certified accommodation at the Kimpton Kitalay. You’ll be required to stay in your luxurious room while awaiting the results of the first test. Once you’ve received a negative result, you’re free to travel around Koh Samui, Koh Phangan or Koh Tao and enjoy all the sights, sounds and flavors of your tropical island vacation.
You’ll need to take your second RT-PCR test on day 7. If the test result comes back as negative on day 8, you’ll be given a release form that entitles you to travel anywhere in Thailand.
Kimpton Kitalay SHA Extra Plus Hotel
The Kimpton Kitalay has been certified as one of Koh Samui’s SHA++ (SHA Extra Plus) hotels. This means that your health is our primary concern.
Whether you simply want to relax on the beach with a cold drink by your side, dive into a fresh seafood meal prepared Thai-style at our delicious FishHouse Restaurant, or take a cycling trip to see the sights of the island, the Kimpton Kitalay is here to make your vacation unforgettable.