With more than 90% of the population fully vaccinated, Singapore is better placed to open the economy further. Since the first Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs) with Brunei and Germany on 8 September 2021, Singapore has opened up many more VTLs to countries around the world. The latest inclusion to the VTL scheme is Thailand which starts on 14 December.
With Vaccinated Travel Lanes, we now have the option to travel without the need to quarantine. This reduces a major deterrent of travelling during the pandemic as serving the quarantine is not only inconvenient but can also result in additional costs. In Singapore, the 10 days Stay Home Notice (SHN) for one adult will cost $1,450 or $950 for two adults at a dedicated facility. Additionally, most of us only have about 14 days of annual leave which would be consumed by this safeguard.
Things To Note About Vaccinated Travel Lanes
VTLs are open to individuals that have been fully vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty, Moderna or World Health Organisation (WHO) Emergency Use Listing Procedure (EUL) approved vaccines. Singaporeans and Permanent Residents (PRs) can return to Singapore from selected destinations without the need for extended quarantine if they do not test positive for COVID-19 upon arrival. The current countries on the list are Brunei and Germany, with Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States to start on 19 October 2021 and South Korea on 15 November 2021.
In order to prove your vaccination status overseas, you can request a digital vaccination certificate from Notαrise. This will be sent to your email and/or Singpass app, and can also be printed out. The use of this digital vaccination certificate is subject to the prevailing entry requirements of your destination country.
Eligible Singaporeans and PRs do not need to apply for a VTL pass. However, they will have to travel on VTL designated flights. These are the designated airlines for VTL flights. For flight tickets, do check on the respective airlines for prices and availability.
Active VTL Countries: Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, the Netherlands, the Republic of Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom and the United States
For entry into Singapore from 16 December 2021: Cambodia, Fiji, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Turkey
Deferred until further notice: Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates
Additionally, unvaccinated children aged 12 and below will be allowed to travel via VTL and need not apply for a vaccinated travel pass. However, they must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated traveller who meets all the VTL requirements and must be a Singaporean, PR, long-term pass holder or short-term visitor. Children aged 2 and below would not have to undergo the pre-departure and on-arrival PCR tests but children above 2 years old must test negative on the PCR tests to travel via VTL.
Before we start booking the next flight out of Singapore, VTLs do require specific testing and documentation. Here are the relevant costs we can incur apart from flight tickets.
|Cost For Vaccinated Travel Lane Test
|Pre-Departure PCR or ART Test Cost
|Dependent on country of departure, usually ranges from $100 to $200
|Arrival PCR Test Cost
|Private Transportation Cost
|Self-isolation till confirmed Negative Arrival PCR Test (About 24 hours)
|Residential – Free
|Day 3 and Day 7 Supervised ART Test
|$30 ($15 each)
|Day 2, 4, 5 and 6 ART Test
|~$18 (~$6 each)
|Total Cost (Excluding Pre-Departure PCR Cost)
|~$198 (from 7 Dec), not including Pre-departure test
With effect from 3 December 2021, travellers are required to take a COVID-19 ART at a Quick Test Centre (QTC) or Combined Test Centre (CTC) on Days 3 and 7 of their arrival in Singapore.
Additionally, from 7 December 2021, they will also be required to undergo self-administered COVID-19 ARTs using self-procured ART kits on Days 2, 4, 5 and 6 of their arrival in Singapore. This is in addition to the supervised ARTs on Days 3 and 7.
Pre-Departure PCR Test Cost
[Update] As of Dec 2021, Singapore accepts a professionally administered COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test (ART) in lieu of a PCR test for the pre-departure COVID-19 testing. This can save significantly on the cost as ART is generally cheaper than PCR tests. Self-administered ARTs are not accepted.
Before your VTL flight back to Singapore, you have to prepare two documentations. First, submit your health declaration – SG Arrival Card no earlier than 3 days before the flight. Second, take a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test within 48 hours of your flight. Since the PCR test is done overseas, it is important to note that only results from internationally accredited medical facilities are accepted. These providers are approved by the Ministry of Health (MOH) or the respective departure countries’ Department/Ministry of Health. Self- administered PCR tests are not allowed.
The test certificate has to be produced in English and must have the date and time the test was taken, the name of the testing facility, your name, personal identifiers and a negative COVID-19 result. Most of these PCR testing would require prior booking so do check with the respective providers.
Arrival PCR Test Cost
Before boarding the plane, Singaporeans and PRs are also required to book and pay for their arrival PCR test slots. Upon arrival at Singapore Changi Airport, all travellers will have to take the arrival PCR test. Each test costs S$125 (including GST).
Private Transportation Cost
Upon arrival, all travellers must self-isolate until their on-arrival PCR test is declared negative. Travellers have to make their way immediately to their declared self-isolation location. You can arrange for private transportation, either with your personal vehicle, taxi or a private hire car.
Upon boarding our private transport, we are encouraged to sit in the back seat with all windows wound down (if possible). Depending on your quarantine location, the cost of the ride can cost about $25.
Arrival One Day Self Isolation Cost
Travellers that choose to self-isolate at their residences must ensure that their residence meets the eligibility for self-isolation. This means being isolated from other occupants with an en-suite toilet.
Those that are planning to isolate themselves in a hotel or service apartment can choose to book any location that fits the requirement of self-isolation. We can also refer to the list of en-suite rooms on the Singapore’s Hotel Association. The price for one night at a 3.5 star hotel typically costs $150.
Day 3 and Day 7 PCR Test Cost
After receiving a negative result from your arrival PCR test, you would be exempted from serving the extended quarantine. However, due to the concerns about Omicron variant, Singapore has implemented additional COVID-19 ART testing for 6 days post-arrival. This includes 2 days of supervised ARTs and 4 days of self-administered ARTs. Children below the age of 2 are not required to take the ARTs.
Supervised ART must be taken at Quick Test Centre (QTC) or Combined Test Centre (CTC). A weblink to book their ARTs at a Quick Test Centre (QTC) or Combined Test Centre (CTC) will be sent via the contact number and/or email address declared in the Singapore Arrival Card (SGAC) and/or electronic Health Declaration Card (eHDC). Self-administered ART results would also have to be submitted via the weblink sent to the declared email address.
This article was originally published on 9 September 2021 and updated with new information. Additional reporting by Angela Koo.
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