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As Singapore opens more Vaccinated Travel Lanes (VTL) with various countries, your dream of travelling is finally becoming a reality! Under the VTL, travellers can skip quarantine at their destination and return to Singapore but they will need to take PCR and/or ART tests instead. The good news is that Singapore currently has VTL arrangements with over 20 countries. If travelling is one of your new year’s resolutions for 2022, we’ve rounded up these 7 tips you should know before travelling on the VTL. With COVID-19, things can get unpredictable, and it’s important to be prepared for the unexpected as best as possible. Whether you’re travelling on the VTL to nearby destinations like Malaysia or going further to South Korea, Australia and more, we’ve got you covered!
Important tips Singaporeans should know before travelling on the VTL
1. Plan ahead for your travels in 2022
The new year is approaching! If you were an avid traveller pre-COVID, it’s time to reignite your passion for travelling and take on new travel experiences in 2022. However, travelling in the new normal is different as you’d have to factor in the time taken for taking PCR and/or ART tests. Some countries like Australia or South Korea also require you to self-isolate on some days as you’re waiting for your test results. Hence, this might make your trip longer and that’s why it is important to plan ahead for your travels. One tip is to plan your trips around long weekends to save your leave days. There are 6 long weekends in Singapore in 2022 so it’s time to start thinking about your trip in advance!
2. Ensure you have enough travel insurance coverage for COVID-19
With new COVID-19 variants and changing travel regulations, it’s hard to predict what might happen on your trip. But what you can do is get peace of mind and ensure that you have enough travel insurance coverage for your trip. It would be best to get a plan that has COVID-19 coverage before, during and after your trip. Not sure which travel insurance to get? MSIG’s TravelEasyis now enhanced with COVID-19 coverage and there’s no price increase even with the product enhancement. Starting at attractive prices, TravelEasy has comprehensive coverage with over 50 benefits, including medical and travel inconvenience benefits. If you love adrenaline-pumping activities, the plan also has an adventurous activity cover so you can try sky-diving, scuba diving, white-water rafting, winter sports and more! What’s more, you’ll also be able to get medical and travel assistance services such as finding the nearest medical service provider, arranging for hospital admissions, getting assistance on lost luggage and so on. This will definitely help you to navigate uncertain travel or medical situations when overseas ? #HHWT Tip: Enjoy 40% off when you purchase a Single Trip TravelEasy insurance plan. You will get a free PCR test (worth $138) if you buy an Annual plan.
3. Set up your digital vaccination certificate
When travelling in the new normal, an extra step is that authorities will have to verify your vaccination status and check any pre-departure tests. Setting up your digital vaccination certificate will help facilitate this process and make things easier for you. All you have to do is log on to Notarise to digitally authenticate and endorse your pre-departure test and vaccination certificates. Just remember to print a hard copy of the QR code and certificate provided and show it to authorities as you make your way through airport check-ins!
4. Book your PCR/ART tests in advance
Most destinations under the VTL (except Denmark, Germany, Spain and Turkey) require you to have negative PCR or ART test results within 72 hours of your departure. Hence, you’ll have to book your tests in advance and make sure that you have enough time to receive the test results before your flight. It’s also important to check how many PCR and/or ART tests the destination you’re travelling to requires you to do while you’re there. The Singapore Airlines website has a good summary of entry requirements for various VTL destinations. If you’re travelling back to Singapore on a VTL flight, do note that you’ll need to take a professionally administered ART or PCR test within 2 days of your flight and another PCR test on arrival. For the pre-departure test, you’ll have to make your own arrangements and for the on-arrival test, you’ll have to book your slot using Changi Airport’s Safe Travel Concierge. Plus, you’ll have to take an ART test on days 2-7 after you arrive in Singapore. On day 3 and day 7, you’ll need to undergo a supervised self-administered ART at a testing centre. #HHWT Tip: Get a free PCR test (worth $138) when you purchase an annual TravelEasy insurance plan !
5. Book flights and accommodation with “free cancellation” options
With the uncertainty of the pandemic, there’s a possibility that things might not go as planned during your trip. Hence, you should always opt for “free cancellation” options while booking your flights and accommodation. This way, you won’t have to pay a cancellation fee if things go wrong. Although it might be pricier to opt for “free cancellation” options sometimes, we’d still recommend it over non-refundable options. Alternatively, if you need to cancel, postpone or shorten your trip due to COVID-19 or other travel inconveniences, it will also be covered in the TravelEasy insurance.
6. Observe personal hygiene when you travel
While you’re all caught up in the hassle of travelling, don’t forget to observe personal hygiene during your trip too! Travel regulations or flight delays are unpredictable but having good personal hygiene is within your control. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water when you can and bring along a hand sanitiser with you wherever you go. Remember to have some alcohol-based wet wipes with you so you can wipe down surfaces too. You should also wear a mask throughout your flight and refrain from moving around the cabin too much. For more tips, check out these must-know hygiene tips when you travel.
7. Be mentally prepared for unpredictable changes
Besides ticking off a checklist of essential things to do for your trip, it’s also important to be mentally prepared for any unforeseen circumstances. If there’s one crucial lesson that the pandemic has taught us, it’s to expect the unexpected and adapt to new situations. While you can’t predict what will happen during your trip, you can take charge of how you handle the situation. It also helps to stay positive, keep calm and turn to the power of du’a (prayers) for your protection and well-being. Get MSIG’s TravelEasy insurance to lessen your worries and have added peace of mind. It includes COVID-19 coverage, over 50 benefits and medical & travel assistance services, and it also has packaged tour protection from the insolvency of travel operators. When embarking on your next trip, be sure to follow these 7 tips! Travelling in the new normal might be different from what you’re used to, but rest assured, it will still be a fulfilling experience. As your travel plans might change due to the pandemic, remember to get yourself insured with MSIG’s TravelEasy insurance so you’ll have less to worry about. Time to start planning your trip for 2022!#HHWT Tip: Purchase a Single Trip TravelEasy insurance plan and enjoy a 40% discount. If you’re getting the Annual plan instead, it will include a free PCR test (worth $138). This article is brought to you by MSIG.