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Following the huge travel restrictions caused by the global pandemic; Singapore has been working with a number of key countries to establish Safe Reciprocal Green Lanes, enabling business travellers to continue their work with short-term travel lasting under two weeks. The Reciprocal Green Lanes (RGL) initiative began on 17 August 2020 and has certainly eased the difficult travel situation for the business world. 

Although, the Japan to Singapore route is currently suspended, let’s be ready when it does. When the suspension of the Japan-Singapore route ends, are you ready to travel?

Alternate solution with new state-of-the-art facility at Changi

Connect@Changi.com is the first facility of its kind in the world and will certainly be beneficial for many short term travellers to Singapore. It is a new facility that is open to international business travellers who will be able to meet in person without having to first quarantine. This interim measure will help Singapore open its borders to business, official and high economic travellers.  

Connect@Changi TruTrip Green Lane Series
Connect@Changi Meeting Rooms with Glass Panels

Business travellers must stay within the facility throughout their stay in Singapore and hold all their meetings in one of the 40 meeting rooms that vary in size to comfortably accommodate between 4- 22 delegates. Some say it’s like having business meetings in a bubble wrap.

The first phase of the facility, with 150 guest rooms, opened in February 2021. The second phase of the facility will be operational later this year and will have a total of 150 guest rooms. Connect@Changi will be able to accommodate up to 1,300 travellers at any one time. Travellers staying at the facility must undergo regular COVID-19 tests.

Who can travel from Japan to Singapore?

Japanese citizens and Singaporeans (who have residency in Japan) who have an essential trip to make to Singapore can do so via Reciprocal Green Lane. They must be sponsored for this journey either by a company or Government Agency to obtain a Safe Travel Pass-RGL and must also fulfil the following requirements:

● Hold a valid passport

● Be seeking single entry, short term essential travel (I.e. under two weeks)

● Be travelling for business or official purposes between the two countries

● Have return flight documents from the same airport in Japan

Approvals to enter Singapore

RGL Applications for entry into Singapore can be submitted up to 5 weeks prior to travel by the sponsor and must be submitted at least 14 days prior to your planned date of entry into the country. Applications take 7 days to be processed and can be submitted electronically https://eservices.ica.gov.sg/STO/.

You can make your travel reservations prior to the RGL Application as your sponsor will be asked to give your travel details including flight numbers. You will be able to stay up to 14 days in Singapore but under the RGL terms, you will be requested to submit your daily itinerary for your time in Singapore.

*Please note that RGL Applications made less than 8 days prior to travel will be refused.

Covid-19 PCR tests & other requirements prior to travel

72 hours prior to departure to Singapore, as an Approved RGL traveller, you will be required to take a COVID-19 PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) test at an authorised centre. The negative test result must be on official paper in English and must clearly state the date and time that the test was taken.

It is essential that for 72 hours prior to travel, as an Approved RGL traveller, you monitor your health and do not make the journey if feeling unwell. You must also submit your pre-trip health and travel history declarations online using the SG Arrival Card e-service.

It is a requirement that post-arrival COVID-19 PCR tests made at Changi Airport are paid for in advance. (https://safetravel.ica.gov.sg/health/covid19-tests/pcrtest)

Prior to departure, Approved RGL travellers must comply with the following Entry Requirements:

● Submit electronically their proposed secure itinerary during their stay in Singapore.

● Submit electronically their Negative COVID-19 PCR test

Upon arrival at Changi

At the airport you will be required to produce the valid letter stating that you have a Safe Travel Pass. You will be asked to produce your certificate for your Negative COVID-19 PCR test (the test must have been completed within the previous 72 hours) and you will also be asked to show proof of return travel arrangements from Singapore to Japan.  

As part of the travel restrictions and entry requirements, you will be required to complete a COVID-19 PCR test on arrival at Changi Airport. Your host must arrange to meet you personally or provide private transport to your hotel  from the airport to your hotel. You are not allowed to use public transport. On arrival at your hotel, you will be requested to quarantine in your hotel room until the test results are known (within 48 hours).

Travellers who test positive will be given medical treatment in Singapore – at their own expense.

Your local host is also responsible with providing you with information on how to install the Trace Together app on your mobile and this must be done as soon as possible after your arrival in Singapore.

During your time in Singapore

Singapore has successfully minimised the impact of COVID-19 on the country. Lockdown ended in June2020, but since then, strict regulations have remained in place. Quarantine and other violations incur steep penalties such as a six month jail sentence, S$10,000 fine – or both.

During your visit to Singapore, you must adhere to your submitted itinerary. For travelling, you can use a private hire car or the designated taxi you used from the airport. You are not allowed to use public transport at any stage. Shops, restaurants and bars are open, but it is mandatory to register if you visit any of these through the Trace Together app.

Trace Together Singapore
Trace Together

● Masks must be worn at all times in public and can only be removed when eating or drinking.

● Throughout your visit, you must report back to your Host at all times based on whereabouts and itinerary

When leaving Singapore

Preparations for your return travel to Japan need to commence 72 hours prior to your departure. You will need to take another COVID-19 PCR test at a certified clinic or SHN facility. Appointments are essential and the cost of the test will not exceed S$200.

Flight departure timeLatest Cut-off Test Timing
12.00 am to 9:29 am10.00 am two calendar days before flight
9:30am to 3:29pm4:00pm two calendar days before flight
3:30pm to 11.59pm10.00am the day before flight
Latest Cut-off Test Timing in Singapore

It is important to check what are the current quarantine restrictions in Japan and whether they have changed. Currently, those arriving in Japan must produce a negative COVID-19 test result on arrival and undergo a second test at the airport in Japan. Travellers must then go straight home or to a location designated by the Chief of Quarantine Section where they must quarantine foe 14 days. On the 3rd day it will be mandatory to have another COVID-19 PCR test.

All arrivals must also complete the Written Pledge in PDF format and for more information on how to enter Japan with Phased Measures, click here.

Entry requirements for returning to Japan

Ensure that you have all your important documents to hand as they will be required. These are:

● Passport

● Health declaration form to have been completed online. For more info, click here   

● Negative COVID-19 PCR test performed at an authorised clinic in Singapore that is listed on the Safe Travel website. If you are a ‘Business Track’ passenger and have stayed in Singapore less than seven days, the test on re-entry to Japan is the only requirement and you will not be required to take a COVID-19 test prior to leaving Singapore. If you have stayed 7-14 days in Singapore you must take a COVID-19PCR test within 72 hours of your departure from Singapore. Valid Format of “Certificate of Negative Test Result” | Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan (mofa.go.jp)

● It is obligatory that travellers arriving in Japan must download the COVID-19 Contact-Confirming Application (COCOA)

Please note: If you have the Status of Residence in Japan, you do not require a re-entry letter.

On arrival at Narita airport

You will have to take a COVID-19 test on arrival at the airport and you must wait at the airport for the test result. This can take up to two hours.

If the test is negative, you must use private transport only to your home or accommodation designated by the Chief of Quarantine Section and self-   isolate for 14 days. During this time, you will be monitored by Japanese health authorities. 

If the test result is positive or someone else on the same flight tests positive, you will be isolated in accordance with the Japanese Quarantine Act.

narita airport

And one last important requirement…

It is a requirement of the Singapore Government that all RGL travellers who have visited Singapore must retain the Trace Together app on their mobile for 14 days after leaving the country. 

If you test positive for COVID-19 within 14 days of leaving Singapore, you must contact your Singaporean host so that they can provide your Trace Together data to the Singapore Ministry of Health.


Travel during 2021 is going to have ever-changing travel restrictions and to help make business travel as smooth as possible, contact us at TruTrip to find out how we can help you.

Read how @sitwithsit travelled from Hong Kong to Japan successfully Covid-19 Travel Stories | My Journey From Hong Kong To Japan (trutrip.co)

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