One industry hit particularly hard by the global pandemic has, of course, been the international tourism and travel sector - hardly surprising since it had to be shut down completely in order to help reduce the spread of coronavirus.
But, although signs of a second wave are now being seen in different countries around the world, it hasn’t stopped authorities everywhere from looking to the future and coming up with ways in which travel can be restarted, albeit in a covid-secure way.
Now could well be the time to start looking into holiday lettings in Thailand if you’ve been getting itchy feet, for example, as the country has just announced that it will soon be allowing foreign tourists to touch down in the region once again.
According to Lonely Planet, the government has now launched a Special Tourist Visa, which allows people to apply for the document in advance and, once approved, they then have to quarantine themselves for 14 days upon arrival in the country, after which they’re then free to explore to their heart’s content.
There are quite a lot of hoops you’ll need to jump through, however, so be prepared for a lot of red tape and bureaucracy.
You’ll need to use a third party to apply for the visa in the first instance, pay in advance for a private direct flight to Bangkok, arrange for your quarantine to be carried out at a state-approved facility, have a criminal background check carried out and so on… but if it means you get to satisfy your wanderlust once again, it’ll all be worth it in the end.
The visa will grant you a stay of 90 days and you can extend your stay twice, so you could find yourself spending almost nine months travelling around Thailand if you so choose. Bear in mind that you may also have to wear a wristband or use an app so the government can monitor your movements as you travel, however.
The programme could start as early as October next year, so if Thailand has been on your bucket list for a while and you can’t wait to get going with your holiday planning, now’s the time to start thinking about the feasibility of it all.
Also make sure you don’t forget about the possible risks of travelling during a pandemic, however, and make sure you monitor travel advice in your own country and also that of your chosen destination.
Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and carry hand sanitiser with you wherever you go so you can really prioritise health and safety wherever you go. Try not to touch your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands, avoid close contact with anyone who’s sick and if you feel unwell, do not travel.