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Quarantine-free travel: Singapore to begin easing restrictions from 26 August

Singapore will allow quarantine-free entry from next month to travellers from Germany and Brunei who are vaccinated against COVID-19, as part of a plan to gradually reopen its borders.

Singapore will allow quarantine-free entry from next month to travellers from Germany and Brunei who are vaccinated against COVID-19, as part of a plan to gradually reopen its borders.

Singapore is set to launch its first quarantine-free travel program for vaccinated people arriving from Germany and Brunei and ease restrictions for visitors from Hong Kong and Macao as it seeks to reopen its borders after fully vaccinating over 75% of its population, the government said Thursday.

“As the global COVID-19 situation evolves, we will continue to adjust our border measures with the appropriate safeguards to ensure public health and safety,” the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore said.

Previously, only Singapore residents and those with employment or student passes were allowed to enter the country.

From 8 September, visitors from Germany and Brunei can apply for a Vaccinated Travel Pass to enter Singapore, regardless of their reason for travelling.

They must take multiple coronavirus tests, including pre-departure, on arrival, and post-arrival, in lieu of a quarantine.

Changi Airport, Singapore
Changi Airport

The deal means that travellers must also have stayed in their country of departure, either Germany or Brunei, or in Singapore before that, for at least 21 consecutive days before departing for Singapore.

Other requirements include insurance that covers COVID-19 medical treatment.

Separately, tourists from Hong Kong and Macao who have spent three consecutive weeks in those cities can apply to enter Singapore from 26 August.

They also will not need to quarantine if they test negative on arrival and isolate themselves until the test results are available.

However, transport minister S. Iswaran said there are no more plans to establish a Singapore-Hong Kong travel bubble. The planned air travel bubble had earlier been aborted twice because of spikes in virus cases.

Singapore_Gardens_By_The_Bay
Gardens By The Bay

Lawrence Wong, finance minister and co-chair of Singapore’s coronavirus task force, said it was important to reopen the country carefully.

“Risk tolerance and risk attitudes will differ from country to country,” he told a briefing.

“We want to get through this pandemic with minimum damage and minimum death toll while trying to resume life as normally as we can.”

The health ministry said Singapore would also pilot home isolation for fully vaccinated people who are infected with coronavirus and have mild symptoms.

As of Tuesday, 77% of Singapore’s population has had two vaccine shots.

Click here to get the latest on where we’re at as a nation when it comes to the vaccination rate.

Source: AAP