It’s tiresome to think about the numerous phases of MCOs and lockdowns we’ve had to endure since March 2020. Although the recent National Recovery Plan drew mix feelings among the public, it’s brought renewed hope to some who are hoping things will start to improve by year end.
Phase 4 could take place by November if daily Covid-19 cases remain below 500 and 60% of people in Malaysia have received their 2nd dose of vaccine. Is it too far fetched to think of the day when all economic sectors will reopen and social activities will be allowed? Even travelling abroad isn’t ideal, many would settle for interstate and domestic travels.
TripAdvisor recently conducted a study on “behavioural differences in how vaccinated and unvaccinated travellers are thinking about travel”. In fact, those who have already been vaccinated are probably booking and planning their upcoming holidays already.
Unlike many countries in Asia, where new Covid-19 variants have caused numerous deaths and vaccine rollout is still at a slow pace, the people in United States and Britain have already been vaccinated and avid wanderlusters are pushing the recovery in the tourism sector forward.
“Now the focus must be on governments and international organisations to ensure vaccines reach every part of the world as quickly as possible and make it as easy as possible for vaccinated tourists to travel globally once again,” said TripAdvisor chief executive officer Stephen Kaufer.
Here’s a short summary of the latest developments regarding border reopening in Asia Pacific and more:
Singapore: Khairy Jamaluddin recently announced that Malaysia is in talks with Singapore and other countries to accept the MySejahtera as vaccine passport.
“Once you have the yellow profile on your MySejahtera, that means you are fully vaccinated. We will use the QR code once the Covid-19 Emergency Management Technical Committee recommends allowing certain freedoms (such as international travel) that are not currently possible,” he was quoted as saying.
Thailand: Phuket is hoping to reopen the island destination by 1st July, where tourist won’t have to be quarantined, provided Phuket is the single arrival and departure point.
Indonesia: Bali is eyeing to welcome tourists by July, where 3 Bintan resorts have been declared as green zones.
Cambodia: Cambodia will possibly kick off international tourism (starting with Siem Reap) by 4Q this year. Reports show that Cambodia’s current vaccination rate is ahead of most countries in the region.
South Korea: There are travel bubble talks to potentially allow group tours with 1 to 2 weekly flights. Visitors must test negative for Covid-19 3 days prior to departure and undergo another test upon arrival.
Hong Kong: Those travelling from low-medium risk countries are only required to quarantine for 2 weeks instead of 21 days.
Macau: Mainland Chinese tourists have been coming in, especially during the recent May Golden Week. However, border requirements have been restricted again following a recent spike of Covid-19 infections in Guangzhou and Foshan.
Australia: Australia will only allow international visitors from mid-2022 onwards.
Europe: Countries like Spain, France, Portugal and Denmark have reopened to international tourists.