With cross-border travel restrictions eased, AirAsia is preparing to resume flights between Malaysia and Singapore starting August 17.
The resumption of flights between both Malaysia and Singapore follows a bilateral decision to open a Reciprocal Green Lane (RGL) scheme. The RGL will allow for short-term travel for essential business and official purposes by air or sea, subject to conditions aimed at containing the spread of COVID-19.
Per guidelines set by the RGL, elegible travelers will be subject to health guidelines set by both countries including taking a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) swab test. Eligible travelers who are residents of Singapore or Malaysia will be able to apply for a short stay less than 14 days in each country. Filing applications will be done with the respective countries' immigration departments starting August 10.
AirAsia's Malaysia-Singapore Flight Resumption Plans
Following the announcement of the RGL for cross-border travel, AirAsia announced in a release it will reopen daily flights between Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. The Malaysia-based budget carrier also plans to operate once-weekly flights from Singapore to other cities in Malaysia including Penang, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching and Ipoh. All planned flights are subject to further government announcements.
In the statement, AirAsia CEO Tony Fernandes praised the efforts by both Malaysia and Singapore in containing the spread of the virus, along with the opportunity now presented to boost cross-border travel between the two countries.
“The RGL might only be the first step but certainly is most important as both countries start to revive the economy. We look forward to the formation of more ‘travel bubbles’ and ‘green lanes’ between countries with low infection rates or active cases, and proven pandemic curbing systems. AirAsia is thoroughly committed towards resuming air connectivity and thus reviving economic activities in the region,” Fernandes said.
The development of the cross-border RGL comes five months after Malaysia closed its borders in mid-March amid the rising cases of COVID-19 infection.