Singapore Bans Short Term Visitors And Transit Passengers

Singapore is implementing a ban on both short term visitors and transit passengers, starting Monday at 11:59 p.m. local time.

Foreign workers and their dependents will be allowed entry if they work in essential sectors like health care. Diplomats will be allowed to enter. However those individuals will be subject to 14 day quarantine. A broader use of quarantine for arriving passengers is no longer going to be available after the country experienced its first two COVID-19 deaths.

Singaporeans and permanent residents will still be subject to ‘stay at home orders’ for 14 days on arrival.

As of this writing Singapore has 432 confirmed cases. The city-state is doing a good job of containing the virus. A concern here is resources, having to identify, monitor and treat incoming cases when their health care system stretches thin.

The idea of cutting off Singapore Changi airport as a transit hub is nonetheless striking about where we are. Remember when the most that happened there was a passenger being arrested there for buying a refundable ticket to escort his wife to the gate?

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Two comments, neither controversial: (1) I bought a Singapore Premium Economy ticket to Singapore via Europe in January, or next October. I sure hope the current crisis is over by then. (2) I am so glade I made it back to New York City from Thailand before a shutdown of International Air Travel was complete. Whew, that was a close one.

  2. Other Just Saying: Nope, not controversial. Just incredibly self-centered and narcissistic. Gary has the integrity to write about things which affect many people, you just write about you (as if anyone else cares).

  3. I’ve been through Changi 6 times since December (last time was February end). Was quite impressed with the level of organization – they were able to check temperatures of everyone who passed through without bothering anyone.

  4. @”Other Just Saying JR.” Gary’s post is really interesting and relevant. Anyone traveling in Asia, should consider how they will get home, while national authorities shut down airports and transit passengers. Further, if they have tickets to Asia paid for in cash/credit cards, maybe they should consider them tentative and think about how to get the money back. My comment was meant to communicate those concepts from personal experience.

    To be honest, this is a travel blog. I would love the commentary to be filled with travel experiences, rather than ongoing domestic political squabbles. Reading other people plans on the ground, can be educational to someone who travels a lot.

    So “Other Just Saying JR”.: Do you have any travel plans to share? I would love to hear them. Or are you just here to put me down.

  5. Related to Gary’s post above, Bangkok Post (3/23/20) is reporting that Singapore Airlines has announced “it will slash 96% of its capacity as demand for air travel evaporates due to coronavirus-related movement restrictions.” It is also planning to delay plane purchases and cut pay to managers.

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