Tourists to Thailand now have to wear mandatory wristbands to track their movements amid pandemic

The Thai government has decided to have all foreign visitors to wear specially designed wristbands to track their movement amid the coronavirus pandemic which the country has so far handled quite well, but with huge sacrifices with regards to its economy.

Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society, in collaboration with Thai startup companies, is developing a “smartband” to be used for tracking foreign tourists visiting Thailand .

The plan has been approved by the cabinet committee under chairmanship of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha following the weekly cabinet meeting on October 28.

The smart device will be distributed for individual foreign visitors and will track their locations and measure the body temperature, blood pressure and heart rate. If the tourist has a body temperature above 37.5 degrees Celsius, the application will immediately alert nearby medical officers for primary health assistance.

The wristband can also help the wearers with various problems, including asking for special assistance during quarantine and asking for directions when they got lost, according to the ministry.

Wrist band for tourists arriving under the new special visa programme

The “smartband” will be initially applied to a limited group of incoming tourists traveling under the new Special Tourist Visa starting November 1. It is unclear how long one would need to wear the smartband as a tourist. It was also not announced what the exact cost would be, if any, for the band.

The wristband regulation has been met with immediate criticism by some tourism agencies and data privacy groups. However, similar measures have been applied in Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea.

In fact, not many tourists are currently visiting Thailand. Those who are allowed to enter the country – for example because they have family members or are officially working there, or those who are able to obtain a Special Tourist Visa – must present a “fit to fly” certificate from a doctor, a separate Covid-19 test certificate and a health insurance policy with coverage including Covid-19 related treatment in Thailand of at least $100,000.

Business travelers can apply for a certificate of entry if they have an official invitation from a Thai government agency or a large Thai company. As per current regulations, they must show a copy of a bank statement with a balance of at least 500,000 baht ($16,062) for the past six months.



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The Thai government has decided to have all foreign visitors to wear specially designed wristbands to track their movement amid the coronavirus pandemic which the country has so far handled quite well, but with huge sacrifices with regards to its economy. Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society, in collaboration with Thai startup companies, is developing a “smartband” to be used for tracking foreign tourists visiting Thailand . The plan has been approved by the cabinet committee under chairmanship of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha following the weekly cabinet meeting on October 28. The smart device will be distributed for individual...

The Thai government has decided to have all foreign visitors to wear specially designed wristbands to track their movement amid the coronavirus pandemic which the country has so far handled quite well, but with huge sacrifices with regards to its economy.

Thailand’s Ministry of Digital Economy and Society, in collaboration with Thai startup companies, is developing a “smartband” to be used for tracking foreign tourists visiting Thailand .

The plan has been approved by the cabinet committee under chairmanship of Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha following the weekly cabinet meeting on October 28.

The smart device will be distributed for individual foreign visitors and will track their locations and measure the body temperature, blood pressure and heart rate. If the tourist has a body temperature above 37.5 degrees Celsius, the application will immediately alert nearby medical officers for primary health assistance.

The wristband can also help the wearers with various problems, including asking for special assistance during quarantine and asking for directions when they got lost, according to the ministry.

Wrist band for tourists arriving under the new special visa programme

The “smartband” will be initially applied to a limited group of incoming tourists traveling under the new Special Tourist Visa starting November 1. It is unclear how long one would need to wear the smartband as a tourist. It was also not announced what the exact cost would be, if any, for the band.

The wristband regulation has been met with immediate criticism by some tourism agencies and data privacy groups. However, similar measures have been applied in Hong Kong, Singapore and South Korea.

In fact, not many tourists are currently visiting Thailand. Those who are allowed to enter the country – for example because they have family members or are officially working there, or those who are able to obtain a Special Tourist Visa – must present a “fit to fly” certificate from a doctor, a separate Covid-19 test certificate and a health insurance policy with coverage including Covid-19 related treatment in Thailand of at least $100,000.

Business travelers can apply for a certificate of entry if they have an official invitation from a Thai government agency or a large Thai company. As per current regulations, they must show a copy of a bank statement with a balance of at least 500,000 baht ($16,062) for the past six months.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

 

 

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