Published on : Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Singapore recently decided to allow quarantine-free entry for fully vaccinated passengers from eight more countries as a part of its plan to ease restrictions while gearing up to live with the coronavirus.The latest easing expanded a programme that began with vaccinated air travel lanes with Germany and Brunei last month and is now open to passengers from the US, Canada, Britain, Denmark, France, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands.
Singapore Airlines said flights from Amsterdam, London, Los Angeles and New York were scheduled to arrive Tuesday under the programme. Passengers arriving under the latest regulation will also include South Korea from November 15. Travellers from these nations will no-longer need to quarantine if they have been fully vaccinated and test negative for the virus before they depart and when they arrive.
The city-state initially fought the pandemic by shutting borders, lockdowns of varying intensity, and aggressive contact tracing but with more than 80 percent of the population fully vaccinated, authorities in the global aviation hub are keen to revive the economy. Singapore has also allowed entry to unvaccinated children aged 12 years and under if they are accompanied by someone flying under the latest scheme.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong previously mentioned that Singapore cannot stay locked down and closed off indefinitely. He mentioned that the Delta variant is highly infectious and has spread all over the world. He shared that the virus cannot be completely wiped out even with the whole population vaccinated and almost every country has accepted this reality.
In addition to focusing on home care for mild and asymptomatic domestic cases, Lee said Singapore needed to resume international travel. The city-state is home to the regional offices of thousands of multi-national corporations, which rely on Singapore’s status as a business and aviation hub for their operations.
He said that the country should continue to re-open borders safely as companies and investors need to carry out regional and global business from Singapore and people working for them need to travel to earn a living. And the success of the city-state’s vaccinated lanes project may boost the recovery in the global aviation industry, which was largely affected by the pandemic.