Australia will welcome visitors from Singapore as of Sunday November 21 as the countries upgrade their 'vaccinated travel lane' agreement into a two-way stream.
While any fully-vaccinated Australian will be able to fly to Singapore and back without quarantine from November 8, Prime Minister Scott Morrison overnight announced that all Singaporeans would soon enjoy the same privilege.
Speaking at the G20 summit in Rome, Morrison said that finalising the two-way VTL with Singaporean counterpart Lee Hsien Loong mean the country was "slinging its doors open."
"This means within weeks Australia will be welcoming tourists from two of our top 10 travel destinations," he said, with inbound travel from New Zealand now also possible.
"Step by step, everything that we know and love about Australia is inching back to normal."
Although Morrison previously spoke of prioritising international students and workers over tourists, Singapore's Lee has been pushing for unrestricted movement of travellers between the two counties.
The two-way bubble
Singapore's other VTL arrangements with the UK, the USA, Canada, Germany and a handful of other European countries were established along the same fully bilateral lines.
This means that Singaporean tourists, students and workers can all head to Australian states which are open to quarantine-free international arrivals – currently limited to New South Wales and Victoria – provided they are fully-vaccinated and can present a negative result for a Covid-19 PCR test taken within 72 hours of the departure of their flight to Sydney or Melbourne.
Morrison’s announcement was welcomed by Singapore Airlines, with Regional Vice President Louis Arul saying "this timely announcement will let loved ones in both countries reunite during the holiday season and provide travellers with many more holiday options."
"It will also support Australia’s economic recovery with the return of international students from Singapore as well as other important economic visa holders."
The week commencing November 22 will also see Qantas restart flights from Sydney and Melbourne to Singapore, along with a reopening of its Singapore First Lounge.
Morrison also met with Indonesian President Joko Widodo in Rome to advance discussions on similar quarantine-free travel between Australia and Bali, which is expected to begin in December.
Source: The Sydney Morning Herald