3 Key Things to Look Out for Before Your Weekend Trip to Bintan, Batam or Johor Bahru
Singaporeans are known to be avid travellers. For them to stay put on the sunny little island for the past 2 years hasn’t been easy for most. However, with the travel situation looking up with the relaxation of border measures by countries worldwide including Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore, not only does this spell good news for travel-hungry Singaporeans, it is also high time for them to take a much-awaited trip out of the sunny island for a change in scenery and environment.
Before you decide to pack your bags for a weekend escapade to a nearby destination, it is worthwhile to note that the new travel environment does require some getting used to.
For one, getting travel insurance even for short trips to Bintan or Batam is no longer an option, but a necessity. Some of these destinations have their respective minimum coverage amount as well as insurance that cover the cost of COVID-19 related medical treatment and hospitalisation.
To help you plan for your next weekend trip, take some time to read this article. The team at NTUC Income (Income) has curated 3 key tips for you to take note, before you set off on your next big getaway.
Tip #1: Make sure you are vaccinated and eligible to travel to your selected destination
Before you start to book your accommodations and dust off your suitcase for your weekend escapade, it is important to check your proof of vaccination and if you meet the vaccination requirements for travel to your selected destination.
Prior to departure from Singapore, first check that you have an accepted proof of vaccination in any of the following formats.
- Vaccination HealthCert btained from Notarise.
- Vaccination certificate(s) issued by the Singapore Ministry of Health; or
- For Long-Term Pass Holders or Short-Term Visitors with records in Singapore’s National Immunisation Registry, successful verification of their records on the Vaccinated Travel Pass (Air) application portal
Travellers are also encouraged to verify that their vaccination certificates are valid using publicly available verification tools such as the Vaccination Check Portal (VCP), if available, prior to the trip.
Secondly, run a check on the vaccinated travel requirements at your destination of choice to avoid quarantine.
- Bintan/Batam (Indonesia)
- Visitors need to show proof of vaccination, minimum two doses of the vaccine, in the form of a physical or digital certificate, at least 14 days before departure.
- Johor Bahru (Malaysia)
- Vaccinated individuals are defined as those who have received double doses of the vaccine for at least 14 days or a single dose of the vaccine for at least 28 days prior to arrival in Malaysia. Those who have received two doses of Sinopharm or Sinovac, regardless of their age, should also receive their third dose to be qualified as fully vaccinated.
Tip #2: Check the travel-related regulations at your select destination
Different countries may have different regulations in place for travellers. Whether it is travel documentations or pre- and post-arrival tests, here’s what you need to know before you travel to Bintan, Batam or Johor Bahru.
- Bintan/Batam (Indonesia)
If you are a Singaporean and eligible to travel, you will not be required to apply for the entry visa as Singaporeans can stay for up to 14 days in Indonesia without a visa. However, if you are not a Singaporean or Indonesian citizen with Singapore PR status, you will need to apply for the relevant entry visa before you can travel.
- Proof of Vaccination
You will need to ensure that you are able to present a physical or digital proof that you are fully vaccinated (minimum two doses). You will be required to verify your vaccination status on the e-HAC International Indonesia via the Peduli Lindungi app.
- On-Arrival Tests
When you’ve reached your destination, you will need to undergo a symptom check related to COVID-19. If you have a body temperature of 37.5 degrees Celsius, you will be required to undergo an On-Arrival PCR Test and self-isolate at your declared hotel while waiting for the results. Do note that the costs for the tests will be borne by travellers!
- Johor Bahru (Malaysia)
Regulations have now been simplified for those travelling across all modes (land, sea, air) to-and-fro Singapore and Malaysia.
Both countries now allow all categories of fully vaccinated travellers to enter without quarantine or tests, including pre-departure and on-arrival tests.
- Proof of Vaccination
Travellers will need to prepare a printed vaccination certificate to be presented at relevant checkpoints. Individuals who opt to enter Malaysia via flights can obtain an acceptance letter from the Vaccination Check Portal (VCP) in lieu of an accepted proof of vaccination.
When you are travelling back to Singapore after your trip, do ensure that you have filled your SG Arrival Card.
Tip #3: Purchase adequate travel insurance coverage to stay protected
Given the dynamism of travel conditions in today’s environment, it is more important than ever before to purchase travel insurance with an adequate amount of coverage that also covers COVID-19 related medical treatment and hospitalisation.
Since the start of the pandemic, many insurers have begun offering travel insurance plans with COVID-19 coverage. Some travellers may still prefer to purchase these plans to better protect themselves against uncertainties when they travel, even if travel insurance may no longer be a requirement for short-term visitors to certain destinations.
While some travellers may not see a need to purchase a full travel insurance plan while travelling to nearby countries such as Indonesia and Malaysia, it is still important to obtain coverage in the ever-evolving travel landscape today.
With trips to nearby countries lasting for a couple of days, purchasing a Pay-per-trip insurance plan may not be the most cost-effective option for some. With the launch of Income’s new travel insurance, FlexiTravel Hourly Insurance, travellers now have the option to protect themselves while they are on short or spontaneous trips in an affordable way.
FlexiTravel Hourly Insurance enables travellers to purchase insurance coverage as needed by the hour, making this a cost-effective option for short trips that span a few hours, the weekend, or slightly more.
FlexiTravel Hourly Insurance also offers COVID-19 coverage for medical treatment and hospitalisation at your overseas destination. With premiums starting from $1.80 for a minimum block of six hours, you also have the option to add on coverage at a rate of $0.30 for every additional hour, capped at a maximum charge of $3 per day. This means that you don’t have to pay for full-day rates for travel insurance if you only require half a day of coverage or less! Furthermore, you will have the flexibility to extend your coverage by the hour while overseas or shorten your coverage when you choose to return back to Singapore earlier, all at your fingertips via the Income mobile app!
Simply download the “My Income” mobile app, navigate to Travel Insurance section and choose “Hourly Coverage” plan. Fill in your details to activate and deactivate your FlexiTravel Hourly Insurance coverage when you are on the go, even for last minute trips!
With the relaxation of travel-related measures, and more traveller-friendly insurance products that make your trip planning process easier, weekend escapades can now be more enjoyable and stress-free!
*Information presented is accurate at the time of writing.