The announcement of the Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTL) in Singapore may have prompted many of us to dig out our dusty passports and browsing travel websites in excitement. Before jumping to book our flights, here’s what you need to know about how to travel via the VTL scheme in Singapore.
1. What is the Vaccinated Travel Lane?
The VTL allows fully vaccinated travellers to skip quarantine at their destination country as well as upon return to Singapore. This means you won’t need to serve out any Stay Home Notice when coming back home, so long as you are on a VTL flight to Singapore.
All you’ll need to do is:
- A pre-departure PCR test at an approved facility within 48 hours of your flight back to Singapore
- Another PCR test upon arrival at Changi Airport
While waiting for your on-arrival PCR test results, you must isolate yourself until you receive a negative result.
If you are not a Singaporean or Permanent Resident, you will need to apply for a Vaccinated Travel Pass, to be eligible to travel under the VTL.
2. Which countries are part of this arrangement?
The countries under the VTL agreement with Singapore are:
- Brunei (Currently, only Brunei citizens and Permanent Residents are allowed into the country.)
- United States
- United Kingdom
- South Korea (starting on 15 November)
- Finland (starting on 29 November)
- Sweden (starting on 29 November)
- Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (starting on 29 November)
Article updated as of 9 November. For the most updated information, visit the ICA webpage.
3. Can anyone travel under the Vaccinated Travel Lane?
Individuals who are fully vaccinated can travel under the VTL to Singapore. An individual is only considered fully vaccinated 14 days after they have completed their vaccination (e.g. after the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine).
Do note that only vaccines on the World Health Organisation Emergency Use Listing will be accepted.
4. Can my children travel with me?
Yes, families need not fret! If your child is aged 12 and below, they will be able to travel on VTL flights, so long as they are:
- A Singaporean, Permanent Resident, Long-Term Pass Holder or Short-Term Visitor
- Accompanied by a fully vaccinated traveller
- Flying into Singapore on a designated VTL flight
- Have remained in Singapore, or any other VTL countries, for at least 14 days before flying
However, they will still need to complete the two PCR swab tests required to fly back to Singapore, under the VTL, as well as any additional testing requirements of the country you’re travelling to.
Do note that South Korea is the only exception to this. Currently, South Korea does not allow unvaccinated individuals to enter the country.
5. What do I need to do before flying?
First, you can set up your digital vaccination certificate to prove that you have been vaccinated and to verify any COVID-19 test results you may have. This can be easily done on Notarise.
Depending on the country you’re flying to, you may also need to go for a pre-departure PCR or ART test. Countries that require a negative pre-departure PCR test result before you depart from Singapore are:
- Australia: Negative PCR test, 72 hours before departure. Vaccinated Singaporean citizens will be able to enter the country without quarantine from 21 November.
- Canada: Negative PCR test, 72 hours before departure
- France: Negative PCR test, 72 hours before departure for unvaccinated children aged 12 and above.
- Italy: Negative PCR or ART test, 72 hours before entry to Italy
- South Korea: Negative PCR test, 72 hours before departure. You’ll also need to book an on-arrival PCR test at the Incheon International Airport
- United States: Negative pre-departure test, 72 hours before departure
- United Kingdom: No pre-departure test required. However, you must book and pay for a COVID-19 test taken 2 days after arrival in UK. Have this booking reference number ready when going through immigration.
For more details on each country, you can look up each country’s pre-departure requirements on the MFA website.
6. While I am in a VTL approved country, can I cross the borders to travel to other countries that are not part of the VTL?
If you’re thinking of hopping over to a non-VTL country during your trip, you can do so. However, you would need to stay in a VTL country for a minimum of 14 days, before you can return to Singapore on a VTL flight.
7. Do I need to take designated Vaccinated Travel Lane flights there and back to Singapore?
You can travel out of Singapore on any flight, so long as you meet the entry requirements of your destination country.
You would only need to take a designated VTL flight when coming back to Singapore. When booking your flight, make sure to select the VTL flight or you’ll need to serve out a SHN when you return.
Additionally, do take note if your journey includes transit stops at any country. You will not be allowed to travel back to Singapore on a VTL flight if you have transited through a non-VTL country; unless you plan on staying at a VTL country for at least 14 days, before returning to Singapore.
8. What happens if I test positive before flying back to Singapore?
If you test positive for COVID-19, you will not be allowed to board your initial flight back to Singapore.
Most VTL countries require you to self-isolate if you do test positive; and to seek medical assistance if your symptoms worsen. The self-isolation period differs across countries. Additionally, most airlines will only allow a recovered patient to board a flight, 14 days after the date of their diagnosis.
Travelling may be a little more complicated than before the pandemic, but the VTL does make it a little easier! For those itching to travel, the VTL can be a good option, especially since you won’t need to waste any annual leave to serve out your SHN.