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Thailand’s main airport offers rapid coronavirus test for international arrivals

SAMUT PRAKAN – Thailand’s main international airport unveiled rapid coronavirus tests on Friday (July 3) for some overseas arrivals after a three-month ban on foreign visitors was partially lifted this month.

All foreigners, except those with work permits, have been barred since March, but after more than five weeks with no recorded community transmission of the virus, Thailand is allowing in some groups of foreigners.

Business travellers, diplomats and government guests staying for less than 14 days are considered “fast-track travellers”, who will be swab-tested for the disease at Suvarnabhumi airport to make ensure they are infection-free before entry.

“The test itself takes around 1½ hours,” said Mr Suwich Thammapalo, an official of Thailand’s disease control department, adding that its use could be expanded in future for other arrivals and tourists.

The airport test, costing 3,000 baht (S$134) each, is one requirement for fast-track entry without spending 14 days in quarantine, and is required of other foreigners recently allowed in, ranging from those with resident status or family in the country, as well as international students.

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