President of the India-Thai Business Association warns Thai government for losing major opportunities after India not included as a low-risk quarantine free entry country

Tailandia...

The President of the India-Thai Business Association is warning the Thai government for losing opportunities after India was not included as part of a Thailand “quarantine-free” low-risk country entry list.

Mr. Satish Sehgal, the President of the India Thai Business Association said yesterday (October 23rd), “India was not included as part of the Thailand quarantine-free entry list, despite repeated urging for their inclusion from the economic sector and tourism sector.”

Before we continue, for reference, the information on entering Thailand “quarantine-free” for low-risk countries is below. TPN media notes that the definition of quarantine free seems to differ between people, as in reality, one will need to wait at a pre-booked SHA+ (Safety and Health Administration, based on vaccination levels of staff and other regulations) hotel for their Covid-19 test results before being allowed to travel where they wish.

Quarantine-free entry requirements for fully vaccinated tourists from 1 November 2021.

Press Release: Quarantine-Free Thailand Reopening for Vaccinated Tourists From 1 November 2021

“I have worked in business-related fields between Thailand and India for a long time.  I am very sad and regretful about the decision by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to not include India as a country that applies for “low-risk” “quarantine-free” entry.” Satish stated.

“Thailand is the number one destination for Indians to come and get married with more than 300 major “Indian-Style” weddings that typically have hundreds of guests per year. Prior to Covid-19, Indian wedding events alone generated at least 50 million baht a year. Also, in terms of general Indian tourists, millions visited in 2019, with Bangkok as the most popular destination, although Pattaya had been rising in popularity.” Satish continued.

“Thailand will also lose major business opportunities and potential investment as long as India remains not on Thailand’s quarantine-free entry list,” Satish added.

“A recent tourism-related survey conducted in India showed that 64 percent of Indian nationals interested in traveling, out of 7000 people surveyed, chose Thailand as their number-one destination to visit when the country is open for tourists. This was also the most popular destination for Indians that want to travel internationally according to the survey.” Satish stated.

“Many Indian tourists are not interested in “Sandbox” style tourism or BLUE tourism with a seven-day “zone quarantine” before they can travel to other areas. The average Indian tourist only stays in the country for roughly seven days and wants to be able to travel to different cities and areas during this period, not be constrained to the same province or city. Until Thailand adds India to the “low-risk” country list, they will continue to lose potentially millions of baht in income.” Satish concluded.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, responding to complaints about countries not included as part of the “low-risk” designation, only stated that they would be continually evaluating the list and more countries would likely be added in November and December.

TPN media notes that interest from Indian visitors in returning to Pattaya seems high based on communication and mails sent to our offices, with dozens of messages a week sent from social media from Indian nationals wanting to visit the area with no quarantine. It is unclear how many of those messaging, of course, would actually travel if the barriers were removed, but interest is present.

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