Phuket Closes Land and Sea Entry and Exit Points

Security officers seal off roads to Phuket island in the early hours of March 30, 2020.

BANGKOK — Thailand’s popular seaside resort island of Phuket has closed all land and sea entry and exit points until April 30 to try to limit the spread of COVID-19.

Phuket Governor Phakaphong Tavipatana says a ban on air travel will start on April 10. Phuket attracts many foreign tourists whose travel plans have been disrupted by the widespread cancellation of international flights.

Thailand registered 39 million international arrivals last year. Phuket is a top destination for tourists, hosting more than 10 million visitors annually, including Thais.

Phuket’s land travel ban, which became effective Monday, makes exceptions for transport of food and essential items, emergency vehicles and vehicles carrying publications.

Ships are banned from entering and leaving Phuket’s international port, with exceptions for cargo ships, which can unload their cargoes but not allow crews to disembark before leaving as soon as possible.