While foreign arrivals to Thailand over the last year and three months have always had to pay for their own 14-day quarantine costs, the quarantine for Thai nationals has been paid by the Thai government.
That will no longer be true beginning July 1st, when all Thai national arrivals into Thailand will be forced to pay for their own 14-day quarantine against Covid-19.
The government will continue to pick up the cost of medical expenses, however, with Thai nationals paying for their food and accommodation.
According to General Nattapon Nakpanich, operations head of the Centre for Covid-19 Situation Administration (CCSA), the change is being implemented due to too many Thais taking advantage of the system.
In some cases, he explained, Thais had entered Thailand by air 10 times over the last year and had received a free 14-day quarantine paid for by the government each time.
State quarantine facilities will now be closed at the end of June, and any Thai national returning to Thailand by air after that time will have additional arrival costs to take into consideration.
Those Thais arriving by land, however, will still have their quarantine paid by the government.
Meanwhile, the CCSA is looking at other lower cost facilities to make it easier for Thais to afford their quarantine costs. These facilities will be opened in time for July 1st Thai arrivals.
General Nattapon did clarify some Thais taking necessary trips would not need to pay for their quarantine costs, but he did not elaborate further on who those people were or what trips the government would deem as ‘necessary’.
In the last 15 months, non-Thai nationals arriving in Thailand have had to pay for their 14-day quarantine, which in most cases took place in hotels that were more expensive than many would normally pay.
This seems to have lowered the number of foreigners that may have considered traveling to Thailand, if they were not forced to be quarantined for 14 days and pay the upwards of 30,000 baht ($1,000) quarantine costs themselves.
With the Thai government no longer paying for 14 day quarantine for Thais beginning July 1st, it is likely then it may also cause fewer Thais to leave the country for what could be unnecessary trips.