Thailand’s quarantine-cost-free travel pass suspended amid Omicron variant worries

(CNN) — Amid the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus, Thailand has announced some changes to its inbound quarantine-absolutely free journey standing for some visitors.

As of midnight on December 22, no new purposes for quarantine exemptions below the Thailand Go plan will be viewed as. The authorities states this is a short-term suspension rather than a long-lasting ban, but you can find no day but for when the keep might be lifted.

Thailand Move was one particular of the southeast Asian country’s major moves toward reopening to journey. Tourism is a person of Thailand’s major industries, with just about 40 million visitors in 2019. Below the circumstances of the Thailand Go, fully vaccinated men and women hoping to stop by from a lower-threat country could apply to bypass quarantine on arrival.

The go, which was under the “Examination & Go method,” kicked off November 1.

According to a Thai federal government news launch, 200,000 men and women have so far utilized for the pass, which will come with a phone QR code enabling them to vacation freely all over the country and enter dining places, attractions, shops and other community locations.

Travelers who have already applied and been authorised will never be influenced by the new restrictions. Nevertheless, if they haven’t but entered Thailand they will now be required to get two PCR exams immediately after arriving, one particular of which will be at a authorities facility.

Now, travelers to Thailand — besides all those collaborating in the Phuket Sandbox application — will be topic to a quarantine of seven to 10 times, relying on their place of origin.

Thailand has also declared it will increase the nationwide make contact with tracing plan, but it hasn’t yet shared specifics on how that will materialize.

Individuals who have utilized for the Thailand Go but not nonetheless gotten approved can also proceed on as standard the moment they get a response to their software.

The Omicron variant was initial determined by scientists in South Africa in November. It is now the dominant pressure of new bacterial infections in the United States.

CNN’s Eric Cheung contributed to this report.