Tourism minister, TAT hope for a return of limited domestic travel

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PHOTO: Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakan

For weeks, interprovincial travel has been heavily restricted if not outright banned due to the Emergency Decree announced on March 24 to combat the spread of Covid-19. And although the National Security Council is expected to present a proposal on Monday to extend the Decree, Tourism and Sports Minister Phiphat Ratchakitprakan expects the government to ease some measures and allow people to exercise or move about in public areas with greater freedom.

His remarks come after a meeting with Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul and other authorities yesterday to discuss preparations to be made if the government eases measures in some provinces.

“We have appointed Dr Panpimol Wipulakorn, the director-general of Department of Health, to be president of the committee to set up guidelines on taking care of people and ways to avoid contracting Covid-19 if they have to do activities, such as exercising or travelling in public areas.”

“In the first phase, we would allow sports competitions that do not involve physical contact, such as badminton and tennis, while we will make preparations to welcome tourists.”

Meanwhile, Tourism Authority of Thailand governor Yuthasak Supasorn said the TAT expects the government to allow some limited domestic travel first.

“It may be one day trips to nearby provinces within a distance of 100-200 kilometres and limited numbers of people at tourist attractions to reduce congestion. However, we have to wait for the Cabinet’s resolution at the meeting next week.”

Yuthasak says that according to data on tourist destinations found on the internet, search for tourist attractions in May is higher than previous months, indicating more people are hoping to travel.

“We expect that if the government eases lockdown measures, people will be able to travel by paying attention to their safety.”


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