Chiang Mai in northern Thailand has been working towards an October reopening as part of the Thailand reopening schedule, but difficulties in getting the local population vaccinated has caused a rethink.
The popular city had always planned on opening in just four districts as part of its “Charming Chiang Mai” plan, Mueang, Mae Rim, Mae Taeng and Doi Tao but the vaccination rate currently stands at just 50%, 34.7%, 24% and 29%, respectively.
Tourism chiefs are still hoping to be able to reopen in October but on a much scaled back basis, on a “sealed route” plan rather than following the Phuket Sandbox model.
“We cannot open Chiang Mai freely like Phuket as the slow vaccination pace in the province, which has already delayed the reopening timeline from September to October, is still the greatest obstacle.”Thanet Phetsuwan, Deputy Director Communications, Tourism Authority of Thailand
The sealed route model requires all visitors to travel as part of full package tours and the freedom to travel is much reduced. However once tourists have completed 14 days in Chiang Mai, and tested negative in all required PCR tests, they would be free to travel elsewhere in Thailand, subject to current travel restrictions.
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