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Sunday, December 5, 2021

Transport Ministry seeks to reopen int’l air service in Q1 of 2022

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The Ministry of Transport has written to the prime minister proposing restarting regular international flights from the first quarter of 2022.

Passengers arriving in Vietnam on board these flights must show proof of a negative RT-PCR or RT-LAMP test result taken within 72 hours before departure, according to the ministry’s letter sent to the prime minister on November 8.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will be in charge of providing guidelines over full-package international flights transporting Vietnamese citizens, while the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism will direct the operation of pilot flights carrying foreign visitors to Kien Giang, Khanh Hoa, Quang Ninh, Quang Nam and Danang.

The reopening of international air routes will be implemented in three phases, according to the Transport Ministry’s proposal.

The first phase will focus on taking back Vietnamese citizens on full-package international flights and piloting flights transporting foreign tourists who will go on tours, the local media reported.

Specifically, in the first quarter of next year, air carriers can re-operate flights to/from China, Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Laos, Cambodia, France, Germany, Russia, Britain, Australia and some other markets safe from Covid-19.

During this phase, the ministry will allow four weekly flights to/from one of these nations, with 12,000 passengers each week. Passengers who have been fully vaccinated against Covid will undergo a concentrated quarantine period of just seven days instead of 14 days applied to other cases and cover all quarantine fees.

In the second phase from the second quarter of 2022, depending on the request of airlines and the demands of passengers, international flights will be resumed, with the flight frequency set at seven flights per week for each air carrier.

No concentrated quarantine will be required for passengers with a vaccine passport at this stage. Instead, they must self-quarantine at their residence for three to seven days.

In the final phase, from the third quarter of 2022 onward, regular international flights will begin returning to normal.

Passengers without a vaccine passport will still undergo a 14-day quarantine period, said the Ministry of Transport.

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