VTL

With Singapore opening up a total of 11 countries/regions for quarantine-free travel for Singaporeans and PRs, and VTPs for all other categories, here's all you need to know about the VTL scheme.

VTL (Vaccinated Travel Lane) is the hottest new acronym in Singapore, after the government has announced this facility with the Republic of South Korea (ROK), effective 15 November 2021. This was then updated with eight more travel lanes—which comes into effect from 13 October—to six European countries and two North American countries; then with unvaccinated children aged 12 and below.

For context, Vaccinated Travel Lane is essentially quarantine-free travel from Singapore to specific countries/regions earmarked for this initiative. The first VTLs were introduced in September 2021 with Germany and Brunei, which according to Minister of Transport, S Iswaran, brought in a total of more than 3,100 travellers from Germany and Brunei into Singapore. Other than being a successfully implemented (and controlled) travel lane, it is also one that is different compared to other general SafeTravel lanes such as:

  • Familial Ties Lane (which is for long-term pass holders and immediate relatives of Singapore Citizens/Permanent Residents);
  • Air Travel Pass (which is for short-term business visits), or
  • Death and Critical Illness Emergency Visits (which is for short-term visits to attend to a family crisis).

With the VTLs in place, it can not only help Singapore "reclaim and rebuild our status as an international aviation hub with global connectivity", but also help enable the nation to "transition safely and confidently towards a COVID-19 resilient nation", the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) has said.

On that note, Human Resources Online has answered some of the most-asked questions about the VTL. They are summarised below.

Q1: Who is eligible for VTL?

The VTLs are open to all residents of Singapore (albeit the rules of entry are different for the first two and next two demographics):

  • Singapore citizens;
  • Permanent residents (PRs);
  • [must apply for VTP] Short-term visitors, and
  • [must apply for VTP] Long-term pass holders.

The VTP requirements are listed in the infographic above for Singapore citizens and PRs; and the infographic below for short-term visitors and long-term pass holders:

lester vtl info pass holders provided 1600x900

Q2: Who needs to apply for a VTP under VTL?

The main groups that need to apply for a Vaccinated Travel Pass (VTP) are fully-vaccinated travellers in Singapore who are:

  • Short-term visitors (including business and official travellers), or
  • Holders of Long-Term Passes (i.e. Long-Term Visit Pass, Student’s Pass, Work Pass or Dependant’s Pass) travelling from one of the 11 VTL-approved countries/regions (in Q3).

Travellers should note that a VTP is valid for single entry into Singapore anytime from the traveller’s intended date of entry and up to six calendar days after.

Singapore Citizens and PRs need not apply for a VTP to travel to Singapore under the VTL, as they can return to Singapore without the need for entry approval, provided they adhere to the VTL requirements (i.e. proof of vaccination and approved application).

Likewise, all children (aged 12 and below), who are Singapore citizens, permanent residents (PRs), short-term visitors, and long-term pass holders, do not need to apply for VTP as long as they are accompanied by a VTL-approved/registered traveller.

Q2b: What are the application requirements for VTP?

  • Applications for a VTP must be made between 7 and 30 calendar days prior to the traveller's intended date of entry into Singapore.
  • There will be no charge for each application.
  • Fully vaccinated travellers must:
    • Upload the QR codes of their vaccination certificates (if applicable); and
    • Prepay for their post-arrival Day 3 and Day 7 COVID-19 PCR tests at the point of application.
  • When an application is approved, the VTP will be sent to the applicant via email. It is valid for single entry into Singapore anytime from the traveller’s intended date of entry and up to six calendar days after.
  • Given the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, the relevant authorities in Singapore may, at their own discretion, introduce new measures or requirements that may include changes to the VTL conditions or cancellation of the VTP at short notice. If so, travellers will be notified of changes to the VTL conditions or cancellation of their VTP.

Q2c: Where can you apply for VTP?

You may file your VTP applications at this portal. This link can also be used to check the status of your existing VTP application.

Q3: Which are the 11 countries/regions that fall under VTL?

According to the latest announcement on 9 October 2021, there are 11 countries—which go into effect on three separate dates, and will be separately opened for VTL applications.

  • Brunei; Germany - Effective date: 8 September 2021, 2359 hours; Applications open: 1 September 2021, 0000 hours.
  • Canada; United States - Effective date: 18 October 2021, 2359 hours; Applications open: 12 October 2021, 1000 hours.
  • Denmark; France; Italy; Netherlands; Spain; United Kingdom - Effective date: 18 October 2021, 2359 hours; Applications open: 12 October 2021, 1000 hours.
  • South Korea - Effective date: 14 November 2021, 2359 hours; Applications open: 8 November 2021, 1000 hours.

For all other countries/regions not covered under the VTL:

- Travellers must check which Category they fall under, and accordingly follow the travel procedures listed out. 
- Specific countries/regions (i.e., Macau, Hong Kong, Taiwan, or Mainland China) are eligible for other general SafeTravel lanes like Air Travel Pass (ATP) and Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL).
- No travel lanes are, however, allowed for travellers coming from Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, unless they are a Singapore Citizen or a PR (more details about it in Q6).

Q4: What are the requirements for VTL?

To apply to travel under VTL, applicants must take note of three requirements:

  • The first is to ensure they are fully-vaccinated (i.e two doses) with approved and recognised vaccines;
  • The second is to have applications for a VTP made between seven and 30 calendar days prior to their intended date of entry into Singapore, and
  • The third is to take designated VTL flights. For instance, South Korea to only be through Asiana Airlines, Korean Air, and Singapore Airlines; while Germany to only be through Lufthansa, Singapore Airlines, and Scoot. More information about this point can be found here.

Q5: VTL (before 18 October 2021) vs VTL (after)

Before 18 October 2021, travellers to Singapore must have only been to their VTL country/region of departure and/or Singapore, in the last 14 consecutive days before departure for Singapore. From 18 October 2021, 2359hrs, however, travellers to Singapore can have a travel history of one or more of the VTL countries/regions and/or Singapore in the last 14 consecutive days before departing for Singapore.

The aforementioned timeline is also applicable to testing regime, in which VTL travellers—including unvaccinated children (aged 12 and below)—have to go through two tests: a negative PCR test result taken 48 hours prior to departure, and an on-arrival PCR test. Any travel done before 18 October, travellers have to undergo four tests (two PCR tests on the third and seventh day after arrival, a pre-departure, and an on-arrival PCR test). In any case, travellers are to bear the full cost of PCR tests.

Travellers should note that these tests are exclusive of those that may be required at the host country. For example, according to CNA's report, an individual travelling to South Korea will have undergo three more tests which will be conducted there; in other words a total of five tests between home and host country.

Q6: If not VTL, then which travel lane to use to enter Singapore?

Below assumes fully-vaccinated travellers come from the following countries:

  • Malaysia
  • India
    • I'm a Singapore Citizen/PR (fully-vaccinated), excluding PR-IPA holders - No entry approval from travel lanes required.
    • I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - No entry allowed through any travel lanes.
    • I'm a short-term business traveller - I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - No entry allowed through any travel lanes.
  • Indonesia
    • I'm a Singapore Citizen/PR (fully-vaccinated), excluding PR-IPA holders - No entry approval from travel lanes required.
    • I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - Entry allowed through Work Pass Holder General Lane (WPHL).
    • I'm a short-term business traveller - No entry allowed through any travel lanes.

  • Thailand
    • I'm a Singapore Citizen/PR (fully-vaccinated), excluding PR-IPA holders - No entry approval from travel lanes required.
    • I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - Entry allowed through Work Pass Holder General Lane (WPHL).
    • I'm a short-term business traveller - No entry allowed through any travel lanes.

  • Philippines
    • I'm a Singapore Citizen/PR (fully-vaccinated), excluding PR-IPA holders - No entry approval from travel lanes required.
    • I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - Entry allowed through Work Pass Holder General Lane (WPHL).
    • I'm a short-term business traveller - No entry allowed through any travel lanes.

  • Vietnam
    • I'm a Singapore Citizen/PR (fully-vaccinated), excluding PR-IPA holders - No entry approval from travel lanes required.
    • I'm a MOM-issued pass holder, including IPA holders - Entry allowed through Work Pass Holder General Lane (WPHL).
    • No entry alloI'm a short-term business traveller - wed through any travel lanes.

Travellers can make use of SafeTravel's checklist here for more entry details.


Lead Image / SafeTravelBody Image / SafeTravel

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