In July this year, Finance Minister Lawrence Wong told Parliament that Singapore is one of the few countries with very few fatalities. And that it is also unique even among countries and regions that have access to vaccines. In August, Singapore successfully vaccinated 80% of its 5.7 million people against COVID-19. According to Reuters, the Lion City has the world’s highest rate of complete vaccinations.

And what this means is that vaccinated persons can expect more quarantine-free travels. Earlier September this year, the first flight under the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL), SQ325, landed at Changi Airport. The flight carrying 100 passengers from Germany that travelled under a quarantine-free scheme marked the start of Singapore’s VTL scheme.

Singapore’s Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTL) scheme

The VTL scheme was first introduced on 8 September this year to only Germany and Brunei. 4,497 travellers from Germany and 179 from Brunei have been issued Vaccinated Travel Passes (VTPs) for travel to Singapore between 8 September to 12 November. This VTL scheme has been proven successful with only two imported COVID-19 cases out of the 2,000 VTP holders who have entered Singapore. 

And due to its successful implementation, Singapore has decided to extend the VTL scheme to nine more countries—Canada, Denmark, Italy, France, the Netherlands, Spain, the Republic of Korea (ROK), the United Kingdom (UK), and the United States of America (USA). Entry into Singapore from ROK will begin on or after 15 November 2021, while entry for the rest of the countries mentioned above will begin on or after 19 October 2021. Travellers who are transferring or transiting through Singapore will also be allowed to travel via designated VTL flights.

Under this VTL scheme, fully vaccinated travellers are not required to be quarantined, but they will need to take up to two COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction tests and follow other conditions, such as taking designated VTL flights to Singapore. While short-term visitors and long-term pass holders are required to apply for a VTP to enter Singapore, fully vaccinated Singaporeans and permanent residents are not required to do so if they wish to enter Singapore under the VTL scheme.

VTL Requirements:

  • Travel history

Starting from 19 October 2021, travellers must stay for at least 14 consecutive days in one or more of the VTL countries before departing to Singapore (15 November 2021 for travellers from ROK). If the traveller has been in Singapore within those last 14 days, their stay in Singapore can be counted towards fulfilling this 14-day travel history requirement.

  • Testing

All VTL travellers must take two COVID-19 PCR tests—one pre-departure test 48 hours before departure that shows a negative result and one on-arrival test at Changi Airport.  Upon arrival, travellers are to remain isolated until their test results are confirmed to be negative. 

  • Vaccination

All VTL travellers are required to be fully vaccinated and bring proof of vaccination issued in any VTL country or Singapore.

  • Designated VTL flights

VTL travellers must travel into Singapore on designated VTL flights. They may transit via another VTL country to take a designated VTL flight into Singapore.

Singapore to implement a risk-based approach to allow travels

As more of Singapore’s population received vaccinations, a risk-based approach will be taken to allow for more travel. According to Finance Minister Lawrence Wong, Singapore will be open to accepting travels from other countries if more countries are considered safe—lower infection rates and higher vaccination rates. If the infection rates in many countries remain high, Singapore’s border and quarantine measures will remain.

To allow for more travel, Singapore has been establishing travel corridors with countries or regions that have managed COVID-19 well. Under these arrangements, fully vaccinated travellers will be allowed to travel without having to serve quarantine. Singapore will be carrying out a series of “progressive easings” to ensure the safety of its people and travellers. This means increasing the number of quick test centres and keeping a close eye on hospitalisation rates and intensive care unit admissions.

Want to travel to Singapore?

Singapore is slowly opening up its borders and allowing for more travel. If you would like to travel to Singapore, be it for work, a family visit, or a holiday, get in touch with us today and we will assist you immediately. To get yourself updated with the latest news, stay tuned for more articles from us!