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What’s The Price Difference Between VTL And Non-VTL Flights?

Sometimes you just can’t take a VTL flight even if you want to.


The announcement of Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) arrangement with selected countries to Singapore has put many into a frenzy looking for the next travel destination to spend their annual leaves on a year-end holiday.

Fully vaccinated travellers travelling back to Singapore on a designated VTL flight are not required to serve any quarantine upon arrival. Of course, these travellers must meet all VTL requirements before booking the designated VTL flight. If any VTL requirements are not met, travellers would need to serve Stay Home Notice (SHN) depending on their travel history.

Different airlines offer different numbers of VTL flights to Singapore per week. For example, Lufthansa offers four VTL flights from Frankfurt to Singapore. Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines offers four VTL flights from Pair and Amsterdam. Singapore Airlines will operate daily, twice a day from Sydney to Singapore.

*Note: these flights are accurate as of 28 Oct 21. Airlines may choose to add or remove flights at their own discretion.

Read Also: Cost Guide To Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTLs)

Flying From A VTL Country To Singapore On A VTL Flight

While airlines from a VTL country may operate both VTL and non-VTL flights on the same route, it is the traveller’s choice to carefully select what type of flight coming back to Singapore.

One requirement of VTL flights is that you mustn’t have any travel history outside of Singapore and VTL countries in the past 14 days. This means you can still visit multiple countries on the same trip and still be eligible for VTL flights. As transit countries are considered part of your travel history, make sure you do not transit through a non-VTL country to remain eligible for the past 14 days.

Arriving on a designated VTL flight reduces risk and it serves peace of mind to travellers that everyone else on board with them met all the requirements set out for a VTL flight.

And while all flights are rigorously disinfected and cleaned the same regardless of its VTL or non-VTL status, the only difference is that you would be travelling with travellers who are unvaccinated or vaccinated with vaccines not approved by World Health Organisation (WHO) Emergency Use Listing Procedure (EUL).

Is There A Price Difference Between a VTL And A Non-VTL Flight?

Let’s take a look at the airlines operating both VTL and non-VTL flights to Singapore. We will select one-way economy seats between the dates 27 Nov to 08 Dec 21 and compare the prices each airline is offering.

For one-way economy seats:

Airlines Cost of VTL Flight Cost of Non-VTL Flight
Lufthansa (Frankfurt – Singapore) EUR 1,522.74 EUR 1,522.74
Air France (Paris – Singapore) SGD 813 SGD 813
Korean Air (South Korea – Singapore) KRW 575,200 KRW 497,200
KLM (Amsterdam – Singapore) SGD 875 SGD 875

*prices accurate as of 11 November 2021.

 

For return economy seats:

Airlines Cost of VTL Flight Cost of Non-VTL Flight
Lufthansa (Frankfurt – Singapore) SGD 967 SGD 967
Air France (Paris – Singapore) SGD 1,003 SGD 1,015
Korean Air (South Korea – Singapore) SGD 1,227.2 SGD 1,167.2
KLM (Amsterdam – Singapore) SGD 981 SGD 981

*prices accurate as of 11 November 2021.

 

Some airlines currently only operate VTL flights. They do not operate non-VTL flights from VTL countries and are not included in the price comparison.

While the prices are the same for VTL and non-VTL flights from Lufthansa, Air France and KLM, Korean Air charges an additional KRW 78,000 (around SGD 89) for one-way trip and SGD 60 for return trip.

Enjoy The Flexibility Of Schedule

One consideration that might outweigh the choice of picking a VTL flight is the date you have to leave the country. Some of these airlines do not operate VTL flights daily and run a fixed schedule for such designated flights.

If you can’t extend your stay to wait for a VTL flight or perhaps the VTL flight is fully booked and the next available VTL flight is in 3 days, you can consider hopping onto a non-VTL flight and serving the SHN when you return back to Singapore.

Read Also: 6 Countries (Not Within The VTLs) That You Can Travel To For Year-End Holiday Without Needing To Serve Quarantine Upon Arrival

Travelling With Children

Travellers with children aged 13 and above would need to book non-VTL flights as the children would not have received the complete dosage of vaccines to be deemed as fully vaccinated. Regulations at this point in time state that children under 12 years old are not required to present proof of vaccination and may travel on VTL flights provided adhere to all other VTL conditions and are accompanied by a fully vaccinated VTL traveller.

As regulations may change and get updated from time to time, it is best to check before booking any flight.

At The End Of The Day, Is It Really Necessary To Take A VTL Flight?

While it feels good not having to serve quarantine upon return to Singapore, in some circumstances, you would just have to book a non-VTL flight.

As price difference in the flights doesn’t really serve as a primary factor (as shown in the tables above), our decision to book a VTL or non-VTL flight boils down to 1) our travel companion(s)- whether they are fully vaccinated or not, and 2) the availability of a VTL flight back home to Singapore. Because sometimes, it’s just not worth choking up extra hotel and other expenses staying an additional one week overseas just to wait for the next available VTL flight.

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