Ticket Sales For Malaysia-Singapore VTL Temporarily Suspended Due To Omicron Threat

Airlines and bus operators in Malaysia are to temporarily stop selling travel tickets to Singapore under the Vaccinated Travel Lane scheme until 20 January, 2022. (Image by Mike Enerio.)

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Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin has announced that the sale of bus and aeroplane tickets under the Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) between Malaysia and Singapore will be temporarily suspended from 23 December, 2021 until 20 January, 2022.

The decision, he said, was based on a 20 December report from Singapore’s Health Ministry that noted a cluster of three COVID-19 positive cases in the country. In a statement issued here on Wednesday, he added that additional test results revealed that two of the cases exhibited the possibility of the Omicron variation, while the outcome of the other case is still pending. There is no history of international travel in the three cases.

Travellers who have purchased VTL tickets via land and air as well as meeting the stipulated conditions can travel under the initiative.

Commenting further, he said the VTL initiative will reopen on 21 January, 2022 after a risk assessment based on the current COVID-19 situation in both countries.

The ticket quota sold, however, will be lowered from the current quota, he said, adding that more information on the initiative’s temporary travel suspension on bus and air tickets may be obtained from the Malaysian Transport Ministry for air VTL and the Ministry of International Trade and Industry for land VTL.

In this regard, Khairy urged all travellers to exercise caution and always follow standard operating procedures, which includes randomly taking a COVID-19 self-test.

On 29 November, Malaysia and Singapore decided to begin the VTL programme, which allowed travellers who are fully vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine to travel between the two nations by air and land.

Travellers who use the facility do not have to go through mandatory quarantine when they arrive at their destination, but they must take a COVID-19 detection test before leaving and upon arrival.

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A journalist by profession, self-proclaimed horror movie expert by passion. Danisha needs to spend more time watching sunsets than Netflix. Ultimately, she's just another girl figuring out her place in the world in between the multitudinous demands of adult life.