The introduction of a Thailand Special Tourist Visa (STV) has led to speculation that the Southeast Asian country is once more opening its doors to tourism.

Natapanu Nopakun, a spokesperson for the Thailand Public Health Ministry, stated that international visitors planning to travel to Thailand can apply for a Special Tourist Visa, which was launched on 1 October and would allow them to stay in the country for up to 90 days.

The aim of the Special Tourist Visa scheme is to relax Thailand COVID travel restrictions and revitalise the country’s economy.

Documents Required for Thailand Certificate of Entry

In applying for a Thailand STV, travellers must meet certain criteria which includes proof of payment for hospital quarantine for 14 days, full payment for post-quarantine accommodation, a Thai health and accident insurance policy, and a health insurance policy with at least US$100,000 coverage for COVID-19 treatment, the spokesperson stated.

However, according to the Bangkok Post, the key requirement for a Thailand Special Tourist Visa is that the traveller is coming from a country deemed to be at low risk from COVID-19.

Richard Barrow, an expert on all things Thai Visa, has tweeted that the Thailand Special Tourist Visa “is not an open invitation for all foreigners to come to Thailand. They will only accept applicants who come from low risk countries.”

According to Barrow, at least one applicant has been informed by the Thai Embassy in London that the “STV was not permitted for UK traveller.”


If you are in Bangkok and stuck for ideas, try our 7 Undiscovered Things to Do in Bangkok. Or if in the north of Thailand try our 6 Things to Do in Chiang Mai off the Tourist Trail.


Thailand Special Tourist Visa to Proceed

General Natthapon Nakpanich, head of the Centre for COVID-19 Situation Administration CCSA’s panel on the easing of Thailand COVID restrictions, confirmed on 30 September that the Thailand STV scheme would be introduced on Phuket and Samui islands.

Initially, it was planned that the first group of 120 tourists to travel to Thailand as part of the STV scheme would arrive from Guangzhou in China on 8 October. No new COVID-19 cases have been announced in Guangzhou for a while.

However this flight has now been delayed due to paperwork issues, the Bangkok Post reports. Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) governor Yutthasak Supasorn has confirmed that the flight will arrive in Phuket sometime in October.

EturboNews has reported that Phuket would not reopen to international tourists until after the end of the Phuket Vegetarian Festival on 25 October.


Travellers from the UK wishing to get a Thailand STV, should visit the website of the Thai Embassy in London. Article updated 12 October 2020.

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