Singapore Travel Ban In Effect For All Short-Term Visitors

Singapore Travel Ban In Effect For All Short-Term Visitors

Singapore has to focus its resources on returning residents.

Taking into account the increased risk of importing coronavirus cases into the country, short-term visitors need to be aware of the Singapore travel ban that begins at 11.59pm on 23 March 2020.

Work pass holders and their dependents will be exempted from the Singapore travel ban only if they work in sectors that provide essential services such as healthcare and transport. This will come into effect at 11.59pm on 23 March as well, the Ministry of Health (MOH) announced on Sunday.

On what comprises essential services, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) will pursue approving applications for the workers to return according to existing rules, with inputs from relevant government agencies when needed.

Also Read: 20 Things to Do While Quarantined or Social Distancing Amid Covid-19

National Development Minister Lawrence Wong issued a statement about the Singapore travel ban one day after the republic witnessed its first deaths in the Covid-19 outbreak. Two patients – a 75-year-old Singaporean woman and a 64-year-old Indonesian man – had succumbed to the disease.

Singapore is among the Asian countries plagued by a second coronavirus wave, engendered by individuals importing it from abroad – an immediate challenge for the little red dot. 

Of the 23 new cases reported on 22 March bringing the total number in Singapore to 455, a staggering 18  were imported cases that had travelled to Europe, North America, South America and Asean.

“While the number of cases from the first wave has stabilised, Singapore now has to contend with a second wave from other regions,” Mr Wong remarked. 

Previously, except for a handful of countries, short-term visitors from elsewhere were allowed to enter Singapore but were issued a 14-day stay-home notice (SHN) upon arrival.

However, this entails expending resources to enforce SHNs on them, and in the unfortunate circumstance that they become infected with the virus, to dispense medical treatment too. On 21 March, there were still 533 short-term visitors arriving in Singapore.

“During this time, we have to focus our resources on returning Singaporeans,” he said.

Singapore encourages advises citizens to abide by the 14-day SHN and encourages the community to practise social distancing so as to tackle this unprecedented crisis expeditiously.  

Also read: Covid-19: 14-Day Stay-Home Notice (SHN) for ALL Travellers to Singapore

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Ifah Sakinah
Ifah Sakinah

Sakinah has a discerning palate and an innate desire to satisfy her inner curiosity. While she hasn't been everywhere, it's definitely on her list.


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