Singapore Eases Protocols to Let Travellers Entering via VTL or from Low Infection Regions to Do Unsupervised Self-Swab Tests
On Mar 11th, the Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) has made an announcement to allow travellers on vaccinated travel lanes (VTL) or come from low infection rate countries to do an unsupervised self-swab antigen rapid test (ART) within 24 hours upon arrival in Singapore.
The MOH announced on a press conference that this move will replace the existing protocol which requires a supervised self-swab ART starting Mar 15th. This comes as the reported imported infection numbers have remained low over the past few weeks.
“These infections consist of about 1% of total daily infection cases, and many countries have already passed the peak of their Omicron infection waves,” it added
Macao, China and Taiwan are Category 1 countries/regions with low infection numbers.
Travellers who have completed the self-swab ART tests are required to send their result via https://www.sync.gov.sg/ before they are allowed to proceed with other activities in Singapore.
However, the pre-departure test remains unchanged and travellers are required to do it within 2 days before departure to Singapore.
“These are important steps to take to prepare ourselves for a new Vaccinated Travel concept in the coming weeks, where fully vaccinated travellers generally need not apply for approval to enter Singapore, and will undergo simplified test requirements,” the Ministry of Health said.
Travellers are encouraged to refer to the SafeTravel website prepared by the government to be updated with the latest border measures for their departure country before entering Singapore. The SafeTravel website can be accessed via https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/. Travellers should be prepared to adhere to the prevailing border measures to enter Singapore.
During the press conference by the multi-ministry taskforce for COVID-19, co-chair Lawrence Wong said that the government wants to eventually introduce the idea of a “vaccinated traveller”, instead of having different VTLs with different countries/regions according to risk levels.
This would simplify the border measures and allow vaccinated travellers to enter Singapore regardless of their country of origin. “Except for a very small group of countries … maybe because there are variants of concern then we will have to restrict travel for that particular group,” he added.
“Otherwise, for the rest of the world, (the concept will) potentially allow for travel, so long as the person is vaccinated, and then there are appropriate tests that are done. So that’s the broad concept.”