VTL travel from Singapore to Europe: A Step by Step Guide and Tips

Now that Singapore had various Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) arrangements with European countries, I thought I will share my experience on what you need to prepare before you visit a VTL country from Singapore and before you fly back! There are extra steps and more minor inconveniences but it's still SUPER worth it to travel overseas if you can.

Before trip 

1. Check and book your VTL flight back (not go there). Note that not all flights are VTL and there are specific dates. Also there is a n95 or surgical mask-on requirement for the entire flight duration, except meal times (they do serve food!). No cloth masks. Pack enough disposable surgical mask for your trip. 

2. Get your vaccination status notorised (so it is acceptable by international standards) online - super easy, just need your Singpass and passport number. You can then either print out a copy (QR code on same page as details, print two pages in A5 landscape) or save a pdf copy on your phone (make sure you have enough battery then!) 

3. You can upload that pdf during the online check in for your flight out if the option exists

4. Check the country's entry requirements for paperwork. For Netherlands, they only require you fill a health declaration form upon entering which the air crew will provide (which they did not even check at immigration. Update as of 13 Nov: You'll need an official negative ART/PCR to enter. 

For Italy, I read somewhere you need an official negative ART within 48h to enter, so even though I went in via Amsterdam, I still did it in Singapore at Parkway Shenton for $28 +$5 for the printed memo. PCR results can be uploaded on the notorised site but not ART so I had to get a hard copy. Please call the clinic to check if they have the test kits before going down (because the one near to me was out). But nobody checked at all.... 

During trip (enjoy the fresh cool air!!!) 

1. Show your vaccination proof when they ask for it. They might try to scan using their country's app or ask for the Green Pass. Explain they have to use normal phone camera instead for yours because it is a Singaporean cert or show the print out. Most times at this stage they will try to scan it with their app (very stubborn) and it will fail so they will just shrug and read your vaccination pdf/print out to check it is Pfizer or Moderna and date of vaccination, and let you in. 

One lady at the Cathedral insisted to verify the cert with my passport, which was used to book an audio guide so I don't have it on me. Luckily I had a photo of my passport on my phone and it was ok for her! I also had 3 ladies reject me from the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, saying ONLY the EU green pass is acceptable. Even though the Milan Cathedral took me, and so did the Amsterdam MOCO museum and the Brera Pinacoteca (I had the hotel call ahead to verify first because they said only green pass on the website, but they are ok with international passes. You just have to buy tickets and reserve an entry time slot online which you should do anyway for ALL attractions and restaurants). 

2. Keep a mask on indoors including inside or on trains/metro, malls, shops and museums/galleries. Good practice to just have it in your pocket and only remove (or not) when you are outdoors in fresh air. 

3. Find and book an official ART (no need PCR since 11 Nov) 48 hours before your scheduled departure home in the overseas country. The departing VTL flight check in counter will require you to show it and your vaccination cert before you go get your boarding pass and drop off bags. 

4. Go to the Changi Safe Travel concierge website to book and pay for your on-arrival PCR test ($160 SGD). 

5. Within 3 days of leaving, fill up an online health declaration form that ICA needs (link from the Changi Safe Travel checklist). It's not a complicated form, it just needs your passport last 4 digits and contact info as well as tick all the boxes to submit. Also no need for Singpass. You don't need to upload the ART or PCR results on this form as well, just prepare to show it on arrival. Do it to avoid trouble upon landing!

The ICA reminder at Schiphol check-in desk

On Arrival 

1. Go to the automated immigration machine counters in Changi Airport as usual, which just require your passport (and eyes for iris scan) even though the staff will asked if you have filed an online health declaration. 

2. Follow the signs for the on-arrival PCR test after going to the baggage counter. 

It is in an outdoors tent about 5 mins walk away, so get a trolley. Super fast when I was there, just show your paid-for test QR (otherwise you buy it on the spot) and passport with boarding pass to the person, who will print out a few stickers after verifying. They will then direct you to a booth and swab your mouth and both nostrils quickly. Then you are done. 

3. Go straight home after by private hire car or taxi, no public transport or shopping allowed (they herd you to make sure), and wait for results by email or SMS. They said up to 24h but we got ours in 5 hours. It should also show in your TraceTogether app 

That's it! I hope this Vaccinated Travel Lane stuff helps, though the situation is so volatile and Denmark has taken us off their VTL because the EU is recommending us off their list. I guess only time will tell but travel will definitely bounce back no matter what. So good luck, take care and most importantly, enjoy!  

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