Changi Airport News Singapore Airlines Travel VTL

Switzerland and Australia join Singapore’s VTL list from 8 November

Singapore's VTL gets more expansion with Switzerland joining the two-way quarantine-free list from 8th November, and Australia kicking off with a one-way arrangement for now.

Great news for those looking forward to further expansion for Singapore’s Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) scheme, with confirmation that Australia and Switzerland are joining the list, meaning more options for quarantine-free trips from next month.

Unfortunately for those keen to head to Australia, the arrangement will be one-way initially, with Singapore welcoming fully vaccinated Australian residents, but Australia initially only accepting Australian citizens, permanent residents and their immediate families at this stage.

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“We expect student and business pass holders from Singapore to be able to enter Australia, after Australia has finalised the arrangement for their entry. Other travellers from Singapore would not be able to travel to Australia until a later stage.”

Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore

Reciprocal arrangements for student and business pass holders from Singapore are expected to be in place by 23rd November, according to The Straits Times.

Australian Prime Minster Scott Morrison recently announced that international visitors should be welcomed into Australia again “before the end of the year”, so hopefully we don’t have too long to wait to make a leisure trip.

Eligible travellers can currently fly from Singapore to Australia on one of SIA’s ‘FEPO flights’.

The latest VTL arrangements will be effective from 8th November 2021.

Singapore Vaccinated Travel Lanes

Already Running ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ณ Brunei (one-way)
๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช Germany
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada
๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Denmark
๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท France
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น Italy
๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Netherlands
๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain
๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง UK
๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ USA
From 8 Nov ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia (one-way)
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ Switzerland
From 15 Nov ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท South Korea

As you can see these two additional options will beat the launch of the VTL with South Korea by a week. Don’t forget, the rules are set to be a little more onerous for that particular arrangement.

Australia will join the VTL scheme on 8th November, but non-residents won’t be able to travel there until later in the year. (Photo: Shutterstock)

There are therefore now 13 countries under the Vaccinated Travel Lane arrangement, two of which haven’t opened two-way travel at this stage.

Singapore
Vaccinated Travel Lanes

Key Features

  • Must have stayed in a VTL country/region and/or Singapore for 14 days
  • Travel to Singapore on designated ‘VTL flights’
  • No restrictions on travel purpose or itineraries
  • Must be fully vaccinated in Singapore or any VTL country, with an accepted digital proof of vaccination
  • Unvaccinated children aged 12 or under can accompany their parents
  • Visitors and Singapore pass holders must apply for a VTP in advance
  • Two COVID-19 PCR tests replace quarantine / Stay-Home Notice in Singapore

  VTL: All you need to know

COVID-19 testing: Switzerland

For Switzerland no pre-departure or on-arrival testing is required for fully vaccinated travellers from Singapore, so like most European countries already on the VTL list it’s just a case of taking:

  • A pre-departure test within 48 hours of your VTL flight back to Singapore (SQ345)
  • An on-arrival test at Changi Airport, followed by a self-isolation period awaiting the test results

A PCR test with a 5-hour results turnaround time is available at Zurich Airport for CHF 149 (around S$220), which is definitely on the expensive side. Hopefully there are cheaper options in the city centre.

In Switzerland you can take a PCR test at all GPs, hospitals, or specially set up test centres.

Unfortunately Switzerland does not accept Sinopharm or Sinovac vaccinations for arriving tourists at the time of writing.

COVID-19 testing: Australia

Those eligible and travelling to Australia will require a pre-departure PCR test, taken within 72 hours of departure from Singapore, in addition to the ‘standard’ two VTL tests on arrival in Singapore.

Here’s how it looks for those eligible to travel, with a testing regime that will almost certainly apply to leisure travellers later this year, once the VTL opens up as a two-way arrangement for all.

VTL
Singapore Australia
COVID-19 Testing 

Test Cost
Singapore pre-departure* S$125 – S$200
Australia pre-departure* ~S$150
Singapore arrival S$160
Total ~S$435 – S$510

* Prices vary between providers and locations.

As you can see that means an approximate S$435 – S$510 per head testing cost, for a round-trip.

Vaccination certificate requirements

Passengers travelling on a VTL flight to Singapore will need to show their digitally-verifiable vaccination records, provided they have been fully vaccinated in any VTL country, or in Singapore.

Valid sources are as follows:

For those vaccinated in Singapore:

  • A vaccination status on the TraceTogether app or HealthHub app
  • A vaccination certificate issued by the Singapore Ministry of Health in English

For those not vaccinated in Singapore:

  • Holding an EU Digital COVID certificate (EUDCC) issued by any VTL country ๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡บ
  • With a SMART Health Card – CommonTrust Network for the ๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ US and ๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada
  • With a COVID Pass in the National Health Service (NHS) mobile app in the ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง UK
  • With an International COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate (ICVC) issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) in ๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia
  • With a vaccination certificate issued by the Korean Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA), as well as authorised clinics and hospitals in ๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท South Korea

Singapore says “we are currently working on accepting digitally verifiable vaccination certificates by other issuers. Further details will be shared at a later date”.

Australia’s vaccination requirements

Once Australia opens up further to all vaccinated travellers from Singapore, we expect the following current requirements will still apply in terms of your vaccination status when travelling there:

  • Being fully vaccinated with aย TGA approvedย orย recognised vaccine, such as Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Janssen-Cilag, Moderna, Coronavac, or Covishield, at least 7 days prior to arrival in Australia.
  • Children under the age of 12 and those who cannot be vaccinated due to a medical condition are exempted from this requirement.
  • The vaccination certificate must be in English, i.e.ย either the Australian Government issued International Covid-19 Vaccination Certificate (ICVC),ย or a paper or digital vaccination certification issued by a national or state/provincial level authority or accredited vaccination provider.

Passengers also currently must complete the Australia Travel Declaration at least 72 hours before their flight departure, which is likely to remain a requirement for the foreseeable future.

Designated VTL flights

Singapore Airlines will operate designated VTL flights from Melbourne and Sydney in Australia, and from Zurich in Switzerland.

A Singapore Airlines A380 departing from Sydney. (Photo: Singapore Airlines)

Scoot will also operate VTL flights from Melbourne and Sydney, while Swiss International Air Lines will operate VTL flights from Zurich. All eligible services start on 8th November.

Melbourne

8th November 2021 – 26th March 2022

  Days
M T W T F S S
 bgcolor= SQ218
A350 Regional
MEL
00:35
SIN

05:15
 bgcolor= SQ228
A350 Regional
MEL
16:40
SIN

21:20
TR19
787-9
MEL
19:40
SIN

00:45*

* Next day

Sydney

8th November 2021 – 30th November 2021

  Days
M T W T F S S
 bgcolor= SQ212
A350 Regional
SYD
09:05
SIN

14:15
 bgcolor= SQ222
777-300ER