Emirates has resumed flights to Bangkok today, September 1.
The Dubai airline is now operating daily passenger flights to the Thai capital from the UAE.
However, only a very limited number of people can actually travel on Emirates’s newly announced flights as the resumption of service comes after Thai authorities extended a ban on international flights to the country until September 30. Plus, Thai consulate in Dubai has said that Thai citizens cannot take these flights.
Fares from Dubai to Bangkok start from just Dh2,745 return, but before you go planning your next holiday you’ll have to check if you fit into the restricted list of passengers who are currently allowed to enter Thailand.
Who can travel to Thailand?
All nationalities, other than Thai, currently need a visa to enter the country, but tourist and transit visas are still not accepted. This means that thoughts of a last-minute summer trip to Thailand are currently out of the question.
Other than citizens, the country is open to foreigners that are a spouse, parent or child of a Thai national, or who hold permanent residency in the country.
For business travel, those who aren’t Thai can enter the country if they have a work permit, are on diplomatic or consular missions or are a representative of a government organisation.
Students can fly back into Thailand as can those travelling for medical reasons, along with up to three guardians. This does not apply to anyone seeking Covid-19 medical treatment. Airline flight crews are also allowed into Thailand.
Travellers who do meet these restrictions must first obtain permission from the Thai embassy in the UAE before travelling, as well as getting several other documents.
These include a certificate of entry, fit to fly documentation, a negative Covid-19 PCR test result and health insurance covering treatment for the virus of no less than $100,000 (Dh367,250).
Travellers also have to quarantine for 14 days and must book state-approved accommodation before they can book flights with any airline.
Thai citizens cannot currently fly on Emirates commercial flights
Thai citizens hoping to return to the country from the UAE can do so, but at the moment they cannot fly on Emirates flights. The Thai consulate in Dubai clarified this on its Facebook page.
“Emirates airline has been approved by the Civil Aviation Authority of Thailand to operate commercial flights to Bangkok currently from the period of September 1 – October 24. However, the above-mentioned commercial flights are operating only for ‘non-Thai citizens’,” it said.
It also states that Thai citizens who are UAE residents must only travel to Thailand on approved flights organised by the Thai embassy in Abu Dhabi and the Thai consulate in Dubai. The next repatriation flight will depart Abu Dhabi on September 9, operated by Etihad.
Etihad is operating to Bangkok, but the national airline of the UAE confirmed to The National that these flights are not currently on general sale.
Thailand’s tourism minister was pushing for an October 1 reopening date for tourism, but authorities have said no further steps have been taken towards this. When travel does open, tourists are expected to have to quarantine and entry will be limited to those travelling from select countries.