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Pandemic travel tips

I’ve finally gone on a trip after two years of being grounded in Singapore. It was so refreshing and I definitely recommend you get a vacation in if you can. I chose to go to Spain, a place both Grace and I have never been before, and it’s also one of the easier countries to travel to.

I’ve compiled a list on how to prepare for your trip and some general tips including how to prevent theft. You can view my full itinerary here.

Get your vaccination certificate.

This is very important. You can get it from here: You can have it in your phone as well but just in case your phone dies on you, having the physical copy will be easier.

They checked the vax cert at Changi Airport before I checked in for the flight and also at Barcelona’s check-in counter. For Spain, they did not check our vax cert upon arrival because we had to fill up a questionnaire via their app SpTH which would already include our vaccination status.

If you have not done your booster shot, do check because there is a limit to the number of days you are granted before you are considered non-vaccinated. Also check if the country you’re going to will accept it or not.

Book a VTL flight.

Make sure the flight returning to Singapore is a VTL flight. Only fully vaccinated people can book a VTL flight. You can check which flight numbers are VTL flights here:

When you’re booking the flight on the website, for Singapore Airlines, there will be “Vaccinated Travel Lane” next to the flight number. If you’re making a few transits, only the leg back to Singapore needs to be a VTL flight and you need to have a 7-day history where you must have only travelled to or transited via one or more of the VTL countries/regions, Category I countries/regions.

If you have anymore questions, there is a whole list of FAQs to help you too:

Buy travel insurance.

Make sure it has good COVID cover, especially if you find yourself in a situation where you contract COVID overseas (I really hope you don’t though!). I got mine from AIG, which has covers travel via VTL and non-VTL. I took the per-trip VTL cover that cost nearly $300, but so worth it.

Book your pre-departure test.

Check requirements for the country you are going to and book a test if required. Check whether a PCR or an ART is needed, and also within how many hours to your flight. This page gives you an overview of all the VTL countries’ requirements ( but please double check with the country’s official website too. Here are the FAQs if you have any questions:

For Spain, just the vaccination certificates are enough – don’t need for any test! You can view the requirements for Spain here:

Check for any regulations at destination.

Spain was really easy where we could just walk around anywhere, without having to show the vax cert at any establishments or use any app to check in. No mask was required when outdoors but compulsory when indoors in Spain, but we preferred to keep it on at all times just in case.

Book your pre-departure test to Singapore.

All travellers entering or transiting through Singapore must still undergo a Pre-Departure Test within 2 days of their departure for Singapore and obtain a negative result.

You can book a test at a local clinic, either a PCR within 48 hours or professionally administered ART within 24 hours of your flight to Singapore. You can look for a clinic near your accommodation on the last day but we did it at the airport clinic instead (more expensive but more convenient). so the email comes in almost immediately and you can straightaway take it to the check-in counter.

If you have anymore questions, you can check out the FAQ here:

Do the pre-departure questionnaire.

Register on SafeTravel ( which has a questionnaire you need to do 3 days before coming back. 

Do the ART at home upon arrival.

When we travelling in early March, we had to do a supervised self-ART within 24 hours of arrival. There wasn’t a need to submit the result anywhere but MOH might do spot checks. We booked a video consult with Speedoc (only $15!) and it was really easy and convenient. You can also book at a clinic at

But from 14 March onwards, you are only required to take an unsupervised self-swab ART within 24 hours of entry into Singapore and you are to submit it to before proceeding with your activities in Singapore.

No need for daily testing to Day 7 after that – that’s it! Travelling is really a lot easier now.

Please note that these were relevant to me at my point of travel and these restrictions are changing all the time, so do make sure you are updated.


These are just some general travel tips that might help you, in case you have not travelled for a while and need a reminder haha.

  • Get a good quality face mask for use, especially for the flight. In a compressed area for an extended period of time with so many people, it’s best to be protected as much as you can.
  • Bring a neck pillow, eye mask, face moisturiser and compression socks for the flight.
  • Bring lip balm and face and body moisturiser for cold countries.
  • Those travelling to non-Asian countries, bring chilli! We totally forgot.
  • Bring cup noodles and snacks from home if you’re going to a place like Europe where food is expensive and too salty (for me).
  • Bring an additional carry-on bag in case you shop too much. I use the Longchamp Le Pliage tote XL that is so useful.
  • Have one person bring the Changi Recommends overseas wifi. In Barcelona, there is only one shop that sells SIM cards and they took so long we gave up and only got it in the city. You will definitely need wifi for Google Maps if you’re driving so in case you can’t get a local SIM card at the airport, the Changi Recommends wifi is there to help.

Here are some of the things I did to help prevent theft:

  • Don’t wear flashy stuff (lots of branded luxury goods and shiny jewellery will draw attention to you)
  • Always carry your bag in the front if it has valuables
  • Split your cash into different places and don’t carry all your cash with you at one time (some in pocket, some in bag, some in luggage etc)
  • Use a body pouch with an RFID blocker to store your credit card
  • Or get a wallet with an RFID pocket (just don’t leave your credit card loosely on you because the crooks can simply brush past you with a scanner to get your details)
  • Don’t let your credit card out of sight when making payments. Make sure you tap the terminal yourself and don’t let them take your credit card anywhere on their own.
  • Use a phone sling so you always have it hanging on you (I use the one from Taizjo)
  • Don’t let your guard down even in reputable or highly established places
  • Get a YouTrip card instead of using your credit card if you’re not concerned about collecting points (the YouTrip card acts as a debit card where you can use PayNow to top up small amounts as you go along without a transaction fee; it also has a more favourable exchange rate)
  • Don’t entertain any strangers asking you for anything, be it directions or money or anything, even if they look decent. If they take out their cash to show you and ask to see yours, please know that’s not normal.