Singapore allows incoming travellers to conduct pre-flight virtually supervised rapid tests prior to entry while Thailand’s lowered pre-departure PCR test requirement welcomes over 10,000 passengers daily ahead of the Thai new year.
Singapore and Thailand lower travel restrictions for incoming flights, leading the way in Asia for new normal Covid policies.
Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) announced on April 5th, 2022, that it will allow all travellers, with the exception of short-term visitors, to enter the city upon completion of a pre-flight virtually supervised antigen rapid test (ART).
As of April 1st, 2022, Thailand no longer requires a pre-departure PCR test before entry to the country, flights now bringing in around 12,000 people daily ahead of the Songkran, the Thai new year, holidays.
In Singapore, previously, only people flying in from select countries had access to virtually supervised ART testing. Now, as the list opens up to all travellers, many more countries, including Thailand, can take part in the testing programme. Short-term visitors, however, will still require Covid-19 test results from an overseas testing centre.
93 service providers now offer the virtually supervised ARTs at around SG$12 per test. The tests need to be taken within two days prior to departure to Singapore and are accessible anytime via the MOH’s list of service providers.
In addition, the MOH stated last month that it may consider completely dropping pre-flight test requirements later in April.
In Thailand, where pre-departure PCR tests are no longer required through the country’s Test & Go and Sandbox programmes, vaccinated travellers will simply need to be tested upon arrival, where they will wait in a SHA plus hotel for their results. A further Antigen Test Kit (ATK) will need to be taken after five days, with its result reported on the Thailand Pass app.
The country has also reduced PCR test wait times for arrivals, with results released within four hours, allowing visitors more travel flexibility and eliminating the need to stay overnight in a quarantine hotel.
Unvaccinated travellers however, will still require quarantine upon entry, which has been reduced from ten to five days. And for those entering Thailand under the Sandbox scheme, mandatory stay has also been reduced from seven to five days.
These reduced restrictions come well timed ahead of upcoming Songkran celebrations, which will be from April 13 to 15 this year.