Phuket announces latest COVID-19 control measures for domestic travel during 3-16 August 2021
Thailand moves further up the ‘Best Countries Heritage’ top 10 rankings

Updated domestic travel in Thailand in August 2021

In response to the Government’s tightened COVID-19 control measures in place until 31 August 2021.

Bangkok, 17 August, 2021 – The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) would like to provide the latest additional information regarding some changes to air and road travel, following the just announced extension of the COVID-19 control measures for domestic travel to Phuket through to the end of August.

Air Travel

Bangkok Airways (Updated!)

Bangkok Airways has rescheduled its domestic flights resumption plan to 1 September, 2021, to consecutively comply with the government’s preventive measures during the COVID-19 outbreak.

Flight services between Samui – Singapore and under the Samui Plus Programme, and flights accommodating transit/transfer international passengers from Bangkok to Ko Samui still operate as normal.

Passengers affected by this announcement can rebook for a new travel date without a rebooking fee; or postpone without a new departure date (Open Ticket), or postpone with a new departure date, or get a full refund by means of a Travel Voucher.

For more information, contact the call centre Tel. 1771 and +66 (0) 270-6699 (08.00-20.00 Hrs.), via PG Live Chat at, or Email

Nok Air (Updated!)

From 6-18 August, 2021, Nok Air is operating one-way flights from Phuket to U-Tapao Airport in Rayong with transfers available by road to Bangkok.

From 18 August, 2021, it will also be offering round-trip flights between U-Tapao and Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Nakhon Si Thammarat, Ubon Ratchathani, Udon Thani and Surat Thani.

More information is available at, via the Nok Air Mobile Application, or Tel. 1318.

Thai AirAsia

Thai AirAsia announced it would be temporarily ceasing all operations in August.

Thai Lion Air

Passengers with travel dates between 4-15 August, 2021, can either apply for a one-time change of the travel date without a fee, except for the high travel period of 12-15 August, 24-26 September, 12-14 October, 21-26 October, 3-7 December, 9-13 December, 25-31 December, or get an automatic extension of the ticket credit (credit shell) in the system until 31 December, 2021. For more information, contact call centre at (+66)2 529 9999.

Thai Smile Airways (Updated!)

Thai Smile Airways will operate a flight from Phuket to Bangkok for the Phuket Sandbox passengers on 18 August, 2021. Flight WE8784 will depart Phuket at 14.30 Hrs. and arrive in Bangkok at 16.00 Hrs. The ticket price is 4,300 Baht per person all inclusive. For further information on this flight, email to

Aside from the above one-way flight from Phuket to Bangkok, the airline has temporarily suspended domestic flight services from 4-19 August, 2021. Affected passengers can request a flight date or route change 4 hours prior to the original departure time, or request a full refund in the form of an EMD credit in which passengers can retain the value of their fare in a credit account for future travel (expires 365 days after the EMD is approved).

Thai Smile Airways has automatically extended the expiry date for the EMD credit to 31 December, 2022. Passengers can use the EMD reference number previously received for the new reservation in the specified period.

Thai VietJet Air (Updated!)

Thai VietJet Air is offering promotional fares on selected domestic routes for travel between 15 September-31 December, 2021. Bookings must be made within 20 August, 2021, at between the hours of 12.00-14.00 Hrs.

Inclusive fares from 389 Baht one way (from 489 Baht for bookings made outside the period) are available for Chiang Rai-Chiang Mai from 15 September, 2021, for Phuket-Udon Thani from 10 November, 2021, for Phuket-Chiang Rai from 1 October, 2021, and for Chiang Rai-Hat Yai from 1 October 2021.

Seats are limited and may not be available on some flights. Promotional prices may sell out before the end of the booking period.

Bus Travel

Interprovincial Bus

The Transport Company has announced the temporary suspension of all Northern, Northeastern, Eastern, and Southern bus routes, effective from 3 August, 2021, until further notice.

Passengers who have purchased tickets in advance for travel during this period can request a ticket refund or postpone their trip until the end of 2021, at ticket offices in bus terminals across the country. State welfare card ticket holders are not eligible for a refund, but can postpone their trip.

More information is available at the Call Centre 1490.

Sandbox Express Bus (Updated!)

This bus service from Phuket to Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport is only for international travellers under the Phuket Sandbox programme and their family members. Launched in early August, the service was to cease operating on 16 August, 2021, but has now been extended until at least 30 August, 2021.

The Sandbox Express Bus will continue to operate every Monday, Thursday and Saturday. It leaves Central Festival Phuket at 05.00 Hrs. and PTT Thalang at 05.30 Hrs. and arrives at Suvarnabhumi Airport on the same evening at around 21.00 Hrs.

The fare is 1,800 Baht per person. Travellers must make bookings through the SHA Plus Manager at their hotel. Reservations must be made before 12:00 Hrs. One day prior to travelling.

When booking the Phuket Sandbox Express, passengers will need to provide the following information:

  • Email address / telephone number.
  • Destination (either Suvarnabhumi Airport or destination province).
  • Flight number (if applicable).
  • Flight date (if applicable).
  • A negative test by an RT-PCR or Rapid Antigen test no more than 72 hours prior to departure (if not a Sandbox guest) OR a valid ‘Release Form’ if a Sandbox guest.
  • A scanned copy of the passport, Immigration stamp, and Immigration number.

For more information, contact Khun May on 093-5800889 / Khun Panya on 086-4927882.

Minivan Travel (Updated!)

Phuket Sandbox tourists can now also take a minivan to Bangkok. These depart every Monday, Thursday and Saturday, with the fare costing 2,300 Baht per person in a van shared among 6 passengers. For those who want to hire an entire van for themselves, this is 13,500 Baht and travel can be on a day chosen by the passenger.

Train Travel

The State Railway of Thailand is continuing with selected Northern, Northeastern, Southern, and Eastern routes. Information is available on the hotline 1690.

Boat Travel

Boonsiri High Speed Catamaran

From 1 August, 2021, the company is operating a daily service between Ko Kut and Laem Sok Pier, with the boat leaving Ko Kut to Laem Sok Pier at 10.00 Hrs., and vice versa at 14.20 Hrs.

More information is available at (+66) 061 689 9222.

Raja Ferry Port

The company continues to operate the following routes as normal:
Don Sak-Samui, Samui-Don Sak – from 05.00 Hrs.-18.00 Hrs. everyday.
Samui-Pha-ngan – last departure at 19.00 hrs.
More information is available at FB:rajaferryport or via Line :@rajaferryport

TAT would like to remind all travellers to continue with the D-M-H-T-T-A precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19: – Distancing, – Mask wearing, – Handwashing, – Temperature check, – Testing for COVID-19, and A – alert application.

For regular updates on the tourism-related COVID-19 situation in Thailand, visit the TAT Newsroom via; Facebook (; and Twitter (Tatnews_Org).

For additional information and assistance relating to Thailand’s tourism, contact the TAT Contact Centre 1672 or Tourist Police 1155.