Important COVID-19 travel guidance
The Foreign & Commonwealth Office currently advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Travel to some countries and territories is currently exempted.
This advice is being kept under constant review. Travel disruption is still possible and national control measures may be brought in with little notice, so check our travel guidance.
From 4 July, Thailand is exempt from the FCO advice against all non-essential international travel. This is based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks.
However, the requirement to self-isolate on return to the UK from Thailand remains in place. See guidance on entering or returning to the UK.
The following advice within Thailand remains in place:
The FCO advise against all but essential travel to areas within the provinces on the Thailand-Malaysia border, including:
- Southern Songkhla province. This does not include areas north of and including the A43 road between Hat Yai and Sakom, and areas north-west of and including the train line which runs between Hat Yai and Pedang Besar.
Travel to Thailand is subject to entry restrictions
- At present only certain categories of foreign nationals are permitted to enter or transit Thailand.
- If you’re eligible to enter, you will be subject to a 14-day state quarantine at a Thai government-designated facility at your own expense. If suspected of carrying COVID-19, you may be denied entry into the country
See Entry requirements for more information before you plan to travel.
Preparing for your return journey to the UK
If you’re returning to the UK from overseas, you will need to:
Check our advice on foreign travel during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and sign up for email alerts for this travel advice.
If you’re planning travel to Thailand, find out what you need to know about coronavirus there in the Coronavirus section.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.
British nationals make over one million visits to Thailand every year. Most visits are trouble-free, but a small number of British people do encounter problems in Thailand. See Crime
Thailand is experiencing a drought that has led to some sea water entering the fresh water supply and tap water. See Water supply
Avoid any protests, political gatherings, demonstrations or marches, and be wary of making political statements in public. People have faced criminal charges for participating in these activities. Others, including British people, have faced charges for sharing articles online that could be seen as portraying Thailand negatively or making accusations about individuals. Lèse-majesté (criticism of the monarchy in any form) is a crime which can be broadly interpreted, and carries a long jail sentence. See Political situation
Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Thailand. On 2 August 2019, a number of small explosions occurred in Bangkok. On 10 March 2019 a number of small explosions occurred in Satun City and in Patthalung Province in the south of Thailand. The authorities have on a number of occasions warned of the possibility of attacks to coincide with symbolic dates or holidays. Take care, particularly in public places, follow the advice of local authorities and monitor local media reports. See Terrorism
Urban areas across Thailand, especially in Bangkok and Chiang Mai, can experience poor air quality and high PM 2.5 counts, occasionally entering the unhealthy and hazardous levels. See Air quality
Make sure you research local laws and customs before you travel. Laws and penalties can be different from the UK. Conviction for possession, distribution or manufacture of drugs can lead to the death penalty. See Local laws and customs
There are a high number of road traffic accidents in Thailand especially involving motorcycles. If you’re planning to drive a car or ride a motorcycle, under Thai law you must have appropriate insurance and the correct licence for the category of vehicle you’re using. Not having a valid licence in Thailand may invalidate your travel insurance. Helmets must be worn on motorcycles. See Road travel
The rainy season in much of Thailand is from May to October. See Rainy season
UK health authorities have classified Thailand as having a risk of Zika virus transmission. For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.
The Tourist Authority of Thailand’s website and call centre (1672 - press ‘9’ for English) are able to provide some general advice to tourists in English. If you need to contact local emergency services, call 1155 (tourist police) or 1669 (emergency medical services).
If you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British Embassy, Consulate or High Commission. Consular support is not available in the parts of Thailand where the FCO has existing advice against all but essential travel (as set out above).
If you’re living in Thailand or planning to stay for a longer period, check the Living in Thailand guide in addition to this travel advice.
The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.