PM Insists on Oct. 1 Tourist Reopening for 5 Provinces

PM Prayut Chan-ocha inaugurates the formal opening of Phuket Sandbox program on July 1, 2021.

BANGKOK — Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha is confident to move ahead with a plan to reopen five provinces to tourists amid the coronavirus pandemic, a government spokesman said Thursday.

PM Prayut deems “Phuket Sandbox” to be a successful first phase of reopening, and he wants the government to proceed with the second phase of the plan, spokesman Tanakorn Wangboonkongchana told reporters.

The second phase of the reopening will include Bangkok, Chonburi, Petchaburi, Prachuap Khiri Khan and Chiang Mai. Each province will have its own tourism campaign based on local attractions, like “Bangkok Sandbox,” “Hua Hin Recharge,” “Charming Chiang Mai” and so on, Tanakorn said.


The reopening will kick off on Oct. 1, just in time for the high season of tourism, according to Tanakorn.


“Each province is making preparations, like speeding up vaccination for local residents and coming up with campaigns to draw tourists,” Tanakorn said.

The spokesman also said Phuket Sandbox brought 1.6 billion baht of tourist spending throughout the last two months, which proved to be an economic boon for local businesses.