Hong Kong and Singapore Now in a No-Quarantine Travel Bubble

The first flight in the resumption of air travel between the Asian business and tourism hubs will operate on November 22
Singapore is looking to revive its aviation industry
Singapore is looking to revive its aviation industry

Singapore and Hong Kong have got into an air travel bubble that will be operational from November 22. In what's a first-of-its-kind arrangement, quarantining will make way for COVID-19 testing&mdashthe latter to be done before flying, with an average waiting time of four hours for the results. 

Flights will go up from several the first week to daily by December 7, with not more than 200 passengers allowed on each flight. The SOPs of the arrangement will be reviewed after the completion of one month. 

Having achieved considerable success with controlling COVID-19 numbers (Singapore has 58,000 cases and Hong Kong has 5,389 currently as against the 1 lakh the US is reported every day), the city-state and the autonomously administered international hub are now looking to revive their markets.

Both Hong Kong and Singapore have been feeling the pressure for travel, dependent as they are on tourism and international trade. The bubble is also being expected to provide the much-needed impetus to Singapore's aviation. As against last year, when the Hong Kong-Singapore route was recorded as the 10th busiest by the OAG, Singapore's carriers have suffered unprecedented losses this year since there is no domestic market available in which to operate.

The city-state has already resumed cross-border travel with Indonesia for essential travel and also opened land travel with Malaysia. 

Despite doing away with the quarantine, a certain amount of paperwork will be required. The test should be taken 72 hours before flying and applications seeking approval to travel be made a week in advance. Also, in the event that a passenger contracts the virus in either city, they will be required to bear the complete cost of medical treatment. Travellers would also need to have not travelled at all in the preceding two weeks. 

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