SINGAPORE: Singapore will ease COVID-19 border measures for travelers arriving from Hong Kong, UK and South Africa after taking into account the current outbreak situation in these places.
To facilitate “important and essential” official travel, rigorous testing and self-isolation regimes will also be introduced for fully vaccinated people in official delegations traveling to high-risk destinations, the Health Ministry (MOH) said.
This is part of an update to Singapore’s border measures announced Tuesday (April 20), which also include tightening restrictions for travelers from India given the “worsening situation” there.
READ: Singapore is tightening COVID-19 rules for travelers from India, easing action for those traveling from Hong Kong
HONG KONG: REDUCTION OF NOTIFICATIONS OF STAYING AT HOME
Effective from 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, tourists from Hong Kong can provide a seven-day stay at home in their place of residence “if appropriate,” the MOH said.
This is because of the “improved situation” in the city, the ministry said.
Travelers must have stayed in Hong Kong for 14 days before arriving in Singapore.
Singaporeans, permanent residents and long-term entry permit holders can provide stay-at-home notification in their homes if they or their family members own or are the sole tenants of the residence.
They can also serve notifications at “suitable accommodations such as hotels”, said the MOH.
Travelers must take the COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test on arrival, and another PCR test before the stay-at-home notification expires.
Previously, travelers from Hong Kong were required to provide a 14-day stay at home notice in special facilities.
The measures were tightened in December last year for a “worsening outbreak situation”, with Hong Kong reporting more than 100 cases of COVID-19 every day for several consecutive days.
The city reported eight COVID-19 infections as of Tuesday, including four local cases.
UK, SOUTH AFRICA: ENTRY AND TRANSITS ARE PERMITTED
Long-term ticket holders and short-term visitors who have traveled to the UK and South Africa in the past 14 days will immediately be allowed entry to Singapore.
Those with recent travel history to the UK and South Africa who wish to transit through Singapore can also do so on an airline approved to operate the transfer.
These changes will take effect from 11:59 p.m. on Thursday.
Singapore prohibits entry and transit by travelers from English in December 2020, and from south Africa in January, due to fears of a more contagious variant of the coronavirus circulating in these countries.
READ: New COVID-19 variant: Are the strains of the British and South African viruses dangerous for Singapore?
“Our existing border controls and domestic measures have been able to withstand the risk of community spread of imported cases with such variants, which are now present in many countries outside the UK and South Africa,” the MOH said Tuesday.
All travelers arriving from the UK and South Africa, including Singapore residents and permanent residents, are still required to provide a 14-day stay at home in special facilities followed by a seven-day stay home notice at their residence.
The Health Ministry said it would continue to evaluate data on the various types of coronavirus as it emerged, and review border measures accordingly.
THE OFFICIAL TRIP BY THE FULLY VACINATED PERSON
Singapore will allow fully vaccinated people traveling to high-risk destinations as part of an official delegation to undergo rigorous testing and a self-isolation regime that took effect from 11:59 p.m. on Thursday.
This is for “important and important business trips” made at the request of the Government to represent Singapore in an official capacity in important meetings, functions or international forums abroad, the MOH said.
“Apart from the COVID-19 pandemic, important business and business trips still need to be continued. Although many meetings have been conducted via digital media, certain critical discussions need to be face-to-face.
“Official interaction is also important to safeguard and advance Singapore’s national interests,” the ministry said.
Such travelers must adhere to a “strict schedule of event after controlled event” while abroad.
They will undergo PCR tests upon arrival in Singapore, and on the third, seventh and 14th day of their return. This is similar to the testing requirements for travelers on business travel permit scheme, said the Ministry of Health.
These tourists will also be required to undergo a period of self-isolation for seven days at home or at a hotel upon return.
“They may simply leave their accommodation to commute to the PCR test site or to work for important work that cannot be done remotely,” said the MOH.
Travelers in official delegations will be notified by government agencies of their eligibility for such travel arrangements.
Those who are not fully vaccinated will be subject to border measures in effect on their return.