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- The Australian government and Singapore are planning a travel bubble to boost their tourism and travel sector.
- The plan makes Singapore a quarantine and vaccination hub for international travellers and stranded Australians to travel to Australia.
- Australia and Singapore will also acknowledge each other’s “proof of vaccination” certificate to minimise the hotel quarantine period.
Very soon, Australians may get to visit Singapore for vacation. According to officials, the government is planning to create a travel bubble with Singapore for Australians to vacation internationally.
Deputy Prime Minister of Australia Michael McCormack highlighted being in talks with Singapore to create a bubble, starting July. He further said that Australia would reopen more bubbles as vaccination roll-out progresses, the AGE reported.
The Media report further cited that Australian Trade Minister Dan Tehan has highlighted Singapore’s willingness to act on a proof of vaccination certificate with Australia.
What will the travel bubble with Singapore do?
The initiative is expected to lift the tourism and travel sector that stalled to contain the deadly coronavirus. Vaccinated Australians and Singaporeans can travel between the nations without being quarantined. The vaccinated Australians can visit Singapore and don’t have to secure a Department of Home Affairs’ approval.
As per the plan, returning Australians can quarantine themselves in Singapore for two weeks and then return to Australia.
The plan also includes both countries to acknowledge each-others vaccine certificates. For example, a person receiving a COVID-19 vaccine in Singapore may travel to Australia if the person is carrying a Singapore-issued certificate as a “proof of vaccination” certificate. The process may eliminate or minimise hotel quarantine to a week.
In short, Singapore to be used as a quarantine and vaccination hub. At present, around 40K Australians are overseas, waiting to return to Australia.
International students and professionals can also enter Australia through Singapore following the same process. This will boost the education sector that received a setback due to lack of international students enrolling as borders were sealed as a measure towards containing the virus from spreading.
For Singapore, the plan will pump money into their hospitality and tourism business along with the travel sector.
Travel-bubble attempts futile with New Zealand
A one-way travel bubble exists with New Zealand that allows New Zealanders to travel to Australia without quarantining. However, the scheme never took-off, with lockdowns being imposed several times as a response to virus outbreaks.
Despite the Eastern Australian states remaining open to Kiwis to travel to Australia freely ever since late 2020, New Zealand is yet to show a green signal to the scheme as its prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, remains apprehensive over Australia’s border reopening. Australia had been shuttling between “green zone” and “red zone” as and when NZ broadcast a Covid-19 outbreak.
At present, the two countries have reached a stalemate and no lingering pursuing the travel-bubble plan.
However, Australian prime minister Scott Morrison is still willing to open Australia’s borders to New Zealanders when the NZ Government chooses to.