1 April 2022 will mark a watershed moment in Singapore’s reopening, as the country scraps its tightly-controlled Vaccinated Travel Lanes and welcomes all fully vaccinated travellers under the Vaccinated Travel Framework (VTF).
For Singaporeans, this means that for the first time in two years, the restriction isn’t on our side of the fence. It’s no longer a question of which countries Singapore will accept, it’s a question of which countries accept us!
|✔️At a glance: Vaccinated Travel Framework|
(Starts: 1 April 2022)
|ICA: VTF Checklist|
Fortunately, there are currently 175 countries and territories that will accept fully vaccinated Singaporeans without quarantine. Unless you’re dead set on travel to China, Japan or Taiwan, you’re bound to find something that works.
In this post, we’ll look at two things:
- How to find out which countries accept you without quarantine
- How to learn about the applicable pre-departure and on-arrival regulations
Where can I travel to?
For a quick overview of which countries are open to travel, I use Sherpa, a tool that tracks travel restrictions by origin, vaccination status and nationality.
While Sherpa is generally reliable, it struggles to categorise certain countries properly. For example, it incorrectly states that Singaporeans still need to quarantine upon entering South Korea and Thailand, and that testing is required for Greece and India (you may be randomly tested on arrival, but that hardly counts).
As of March 2022, fully vaccinated Singapore residents can visit 175 countries and territories without quarantine.
|💉 How is “fully vaccinated” defined?|
The definition of fully vaccinated varies by country, but in general refers to 14 days after completing the primary regimen of a recognised vaccine.
If you’ve been vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech/Comirnaty or Moderna, you don’t need to worry- virtually every country recognises it. Sinovac and Sinopharm can be more marginal. You can use Visa Guide’s vaccine checker tool to see if your vaccination is accepted in a given country.
Booster jabs may be required for travel to certain countries, should a certain period (typically 6-9 months) have passed since the completion of your primary regime.
No test or quarantine required
84 countries and territories do not require a COVID-19 test nor quarantine.
Instead of reproducing the entire list, I’m going to focus on the countries most relevant to travellers from Singapore:
- Australia (testing on arrival may be required by certain states)
- European Economic Area (except Poland)
- Saudi Arabia
- Sri Lanka
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
Test required, but not quarantine
91 countries and territories require a pre-departure COVID-19 test, but no quarantine.
Once again, I’m going to focus on the countries most relevant to travellers from Singapore
|Country||Pre-Departure Test |
(time before departure)
|🇫🇯 Fiji||ART (24h)|
|🇮🇩 Indonesia||PCR (48h)|
|🇲🇾 Malaysia||ART (2 days) [For travel from SG]|
|🇵🇭 Philippines||ART (24h)|
|🇶🇦 Qatar||PCR (48h)|
|🇰🇷 South Korea||PCR (48h)|
|🇻🇳 Vietnam||ART (24h)|
|🇺🇸 United States||ART (1 day)|
Countries that will join this list shortly include:
- New Zealand (from 2 May 2022)
Countries still closed
The following countries are still closed to tourists:
- Hong Kong
- New Zealand (ends 2 May 2022)
What must I do before travel?
Sherpa provides an overview of entry requirements by country, but for the most reliable information, refer to IATA Travel Centre’s Timatic tool. This is the same source that airline agents consult at the check-in desk.
While Timatic is powerful, it’s not very user-friendly. Information is presented in long, wordy paragraphs, and it may take multiple reads to understand what it’s saying.
Sometimes, “no” doesn’t even mean “no”! Take Indonesia for example- the first bullet point says passengers can’t enter, then in point three it says they can, provided they enter via certain airports!
So Timatic really requires careful reading, and for a more reader-friendly format, you can also try Singapore Airlines’ Travel Advisory tool. Do note that updates here may lag Timatic by a couple of days.
Travel to Singapore
From 1 April 2022, fully vaccinated travellers will be able to enter Singapore without quarantine under the Vaccinated Travel Framework. They can enter on any flight, and transit in any country en route.
|✔️ Vaccinated Travel Framework|
& Unvax. Children ≤12
|*Children aged 2 or under in the current calendar year are exempt|
Unvaccinated travellers will still be required to take a pre-departure COVID-19 test within 2 days of departure to Singapore, which can either be:
- A professionally-administered PCR test
- A professionally-administered antigen rapid test (ART)
- A self-administered ART remotely supervised by an approved ART provider in Singapore (when departing from certain countries, for SCs, PRs and LTPHs)
Does transit affect things?
Possibly. When travelling out of Singapore, transit in a third country may affect your eligibility for quarantine-free treatment upon arrival at your final destination. You’ll need to read the relevant entry restrictions carefully (I typically google “CountryX covid19 entry restrictions”)
When travelling back to Singapore, transit has no impact on your eligibility for quarantine-free treatment, provided you’re fully vaccinated.
As a LTP holder, do I need approval to enter Singapore?
Not anymore. LTP holders no longer need to apply for a Vaccinated Travel Pass to enter Singapore ever since 22 February 2022.
Where can I do my pre-departure test when travelling overseas?
For a full list of the cheapest options to do a pre-departure test in Singapore, refer to the article below.
Where can I do my pre-departure test when returning to Singapore?
Pre-departure testing is only required for unvaccinated travellers.
If you’re a Singapore citizen, permanent resident or long-term passholder, you can do a remotely-supervised tele-ART by a Singapore-based provider when returning to Singapore.
Here’s a list of resources you can refer to when checking travel restrictions.
- IATA: COVID-19 Travel Regulations Map
- Kayak: International Travel Restrictions by Country
- MFA: COVID-19 Travel Restrictions
- Sherpa: Travel Restrictions by Country
- Singapore Airlines Travel Advisory Tool
- Visa Guide: Vaccination Checker
From 1 April 2022, fully vaccinated Singaporeans can return home from anywhere in the world without quarantine. This means the restriction now lies on the other side of the table, and with 175 countries and territories allowing quarantine-free entry, you won’t be short of options!
Well, unless you only want to visit Japan.
Man, I miss Japan.