Singapore is dropping all COVID-19-related restrictions as of April 26. This is good news for casinos, which will now be able to welcome gamblers without any hassle.
Since February 2020, Singapore has been following strict COVID-19 controls under the Minister of Health’s “code orange” status. This included reduced capacities, regular temperature checks in the workplace, travel restrictions, and more. Come April 26, almost all of it is going away.
But as of next Tuesday, COVID-19 vaccination status checks will disappear at many establishments in the country. This applies to gambling properties and commercial businesses, but not large nightclubs.
Masks will still be necessary in many indoor facilities.
The country will continue under “code yellow.” But it is still a major step forward, according to The Strait Times. There will no longer be distancing and capacity limitations and businesses can bring back their entire workforces. The lessening of international travel restrictions will also help businesses in the country.
Health Minister Voices Objections
The news is welcome by everyone, however. The Health Minister urges caution. He warns that the lifting of restrictions doesn’t mean that Singapore won’t bring them back if there is a resurgence of COVID-19.
But the number of new COVID-19 cases is declining.
On March 29, according to Johns Hopkins University data, there were 13,089 new cases. That fell to 5,729 the following day and has stayed at around that level or lower. There were a couple of spikes, including 9,675 on April 5. But on April 21, the number was down to 3,420.
Singapore reportedly has one of the highest vaccination rates in the world. The Straits Times indicates that over 96% of the “eligible population” is fully vaccinated.
International Travel Back to Normal
Inbound travelers will now have an easier time getting into Singapore. Fully-vaccinated individuals will not need to take a COVID-19 test before arriving as of April 26. Previously, all incoming travelers had to take a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test or an approved antigen rapid test (ART).
Not everyone qualifies for eased travel into Singapore. As with most countries, the lifting of restrictions only applies to those who have received the COVID-19 vaccine. Unvaccinated travelers will still have to comply with testing requirements.
As of May 1, cross-border bus and taxi services between Singapore and Malaysia will resume. There will be controlled pick-up and drop-off locations at first. However, this will change if the COVID-19 infection numbers remain low.
All travel sections are beginning to take measures to meet the changing environment, including increasing staffing levels. They will have to work quickly since Singapore has a few upcoming holidays. The Muslim Hari Raya Aidilfitri, the end of Ramadan, is on May 1-2. Just after that, in June, schools go on break.