The Singaporean government is lifting border restrictions for visitors from Taiwan effective December 18th. The news came from the country’s Civil Aviation Authority on Friday, December 11th, and was echoed by Singapore’s Minister for Transport via social media. This will allow travelers to apply for a single-entry Air Travel Pass (ATP) and enter Singapore without needing to undergo 14 days of self-isolation. Travelers will, however, need to meet several conditions, which include tests and the use of a smartphone app for contact tracing.
Singapore’s Minister for Transport issued the following statement via Facebook:
“Today, we take another step in opening our borders, this time to travellers from Taiwan…They have been maintaining close to zero infection rates and strong control measures, so the risk of importation is low. They will be able to enter Singapore from 18 Dec without SHN.” – Ong Ye Kung, Minister for Transport, Singapore
For reference, SHN is a ‘stay-home notice,’ which involves 14 days of self-isolation.
Travel restrictions for travelers from Taiwan: What has changed?
The main difference for those traveling from Taiwan is the issuance of a stay-home notice, which is equivalent to a quarantine or self-isolation order. This means that after all necessary testing is complete, travelers can go about their activities.
This will be a welcome change to those who do not have time to spend confined in a home or hotel for several days, especially those on business or visiting friends and relatives. It also makes safe tourism possible.
What is required of arrivals from Taiwan?
Just because some border restrictions have been lifted, it doesn’t mean that life will go back to a pre-pandemic style of travel. According to CNA, here are the following requirements for travelers flying from Taiwan to Singapore (effective for travel from December 18th):
- Travelers can apply for a single-entry Air Travel Pass (ATP).
- Travelers must be in Taiwan for 14 consecutive days before departure.
- Visitors will then have to undergo a COVID-19 PCR test (if the result is negative, they will be exempt from a stay-home notice).
- Travelers from Taiwan must download and register for the TraceTogether app on their mobile devices before entering Singapore and keep it activated for the duration of their stay.
- Additionally, they must not delete the app for 14 consecutive days after leaving Singapore.
CNA also notes that visitors from Taiwan will be responsible for medical bills related to COVID-19 while in Singapore.
Optimism from Singapore’s Minister for Transport
Singapore’s Minister for Transport is certain that opening up travel to countries with low COVID rates is a safe move. In a Facebook post, Minister Ong Ye Kung wrote:
“We have earlier opened to Australia, Brunei, Mainland China, New Zealand and Vietnam. Some 4,000 general travellers have entered Singapore since we started unilateral opening in September, and all had tested negative for COVID-19…Taiwan has recently classified Singapore as a low risk country and reduced the quarantine for essential and business travelers from Singapore to five days.”
The politician concluded that during the festive period, he hopes the reopening program will be useful for families and loved ones to reunite.
Will you be taking advantage of these reduced travel restrictions? Let us know in the comments!