The number of COVID-infected foreign tourists is rising in Phuket in proportion to more arrivals and some visitors failed to undergo RT-PCR tests before their flights to the island province.
Phuket deputy governor Pichet Panawong said that from Nov 1, 2021, to Feb 1, 2022, there were 4,369 COVID-19 cases among visitors who entered Phuket through Test & Go and Sandbox schemes.
New cases rose from Dec 13 because some visitors had not passed the Thailand Pass registration process or had not undergone RT-PCR tests. Some visitors had forged their RT-PCR test certificates or conducted only antigen tests. Mr Pichet asked the operations unit of the Center for COVID-19 Situation Administration to urge airlines to strictly require their passengers follow disease control measures before taking flights to Thailand.
From July 1, 2021, to Feb 1 this year, 272,621 tourists arrived in Phuket via the Sandbox entry scheme. Each foreign tourist stayed eight nights and spent 55,000 baht per trip on average. Phuket recorded direct tourism income worth over 14 billion baht and more than 32 billion baht changed hands thanks to the arrivals. (TNA)