Tips & News

Koh Samui Has Reopened Without Quarantine to Vaccinated International Travelers

Thailand now has two island gateways for international visitors to get their beach on.

By T+L SEA Staff

Jul 15, 2021

NOW THAT THE FIRST BRICK of the border wall has come down, Thailand is trying to keep up the momentum in opening its most popular tourist destinations to vaccinated visitors.

Koh Samui, a lush paradise in the Gulf of Thailand, reopened July 15 to vaccinated travelers arriving from abroad using a more gradual approach than Phuket, Thailand’s biggest island, which reopened its international border July 1. They’re calling it Samui Plus — think of it as “gently, gently.”

The program allows arrivals to fly directly into Koh Samui international airport or transit in Bangkok via an approved airline.

Once in Samui, you need to stay at a Samui Extra+ (AQ) hotel for your first week. After remaining on the hotel grounds for three days, you can zoom around the island to via approved transport methods to designated areas, including restaurants, within a “sealed route.” (It’s akin to the tourism bubble program Sri Lanka reopened its borders with in January.) 

After testing negative for Covid-19 a second time, on day seven you’re allowed to move to an SHA+ hotel (meaning all the necessary health and hygiene parameters, and at least 70 percent of the staff have been fully vaccinated) on Samui, or neighboring Koh Pha-Ngan or Koh Tao, and you can frolic about those three islands for the entire second week. After your third negative test, the rest of Thailand is yours for the exploring. 

Check out our handy guide below, and see for all the details.


6 Amazing Beach Bars for a Sundowner in Asia

These stylish watering holes at InterContinental resorts serve up drinks with a view.

thailand tourist fee

Tips & News

Thailand Is Planning to Charge a Tourist Fee in 2022

The fee is intended to fund green travel projects and appeal to a wealthier set of visitors.

Hotels & Resorts


Basking in the sun-soaked shores of Phang Ka beach, on Koh Samui’s quieter Taling Ngan side, the new rooms and villas by Avani’s premium brand Avani+ feel just like your own private beach house.

Hotels & Resorts

Why Thai Travelers Are Rediscovering the Magic of Koh Samui

With long-haul flights off the table for now, locals are flocking to Silavadee Pool Spa Resort, an eco-luxe haven on Thailand’s beloved island.