Thailand: Samui bookings surge

  • Koh Samui’s sandbox programme has received positive feedback after lifting the mandatory quarantine, with new bookings during the first 10 days of Oct 21 already exceeding its total numbers since opening on 15 Jul 21.
  • Ratchaporn Poolsawadee, president of the Tourism Association of Koh Samui, said momentum is expected to continue following the UK’s decision to remove Thailand from its red list, which will enable British tourists to fly home without facing mandatory quarantine.
  • Of the new bookings in Oct 21, 24.5% are from Germany, 13.4% from France, and 10.2% were made by Thai nationals. Some 79.2% of these bookings were for an average stay of 7-14 days.
  • Samui will not require local travellers to show RT-PCR or antigen test kit results from Oct 15. Visitors can use a vaccination certificate to enter the island, with the aim of making travel there less of a hassle for those enrolled in the domestic stimulus campaigns that started in Oct 21.
  • From 8 Oct 21, the 40% subsidy scheme called We Travel Together saw 60,174 travellers book via the programme, generating THB572mn for the local economy. Of the total, THB360mn came from spending by visitors and THB212mn from the government budget, according to the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT).
  • However, the THB5bn stimulus programme Tour Teaw Thai, which subsidises 40% of tour packages at a level of up to THB5,000 per person, still has not received any bookings.

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