Travel News Wrap: 5 October Week

By Halal Trip | 09, Oct, 2020
Travel News Wrap: 5 October Week

We are back with more travel news to update you on the things that are happening in the travel world. There has been quite a number of developments around the world this week.


Qatar Airways Offering Free Tickets for Teachers in 2021

Image Credit: Jan Rosolino on Unsplash

Qatar Airways shocked everybody when they announced that they will be giving away complimentary Economy Class return tickets to any destination operated by the airliner. The giveaway opened on World Teacher’s Day, 5 October, and closed yesterday, 8 October at 03:59 (Doha time). The tickets will be valid for travel until 30 September 2021.

There are over 21,000 complimentary tickets up for the giveaway and it was open for teaching professionals from over 75 countries, which concurrently are places where Qatar Airways currently operates at. The giveaway was allocated and staggered over the countries and the three-day campaign period.

Those successful in getting the tickets will receive one Economy Class return ticket to anywhere on Qatar Airways’ current flight network.


Japan and South Korea Restarting Business Travel

Image Credit:  Louie Martinez on Unsplash

According to multiple sources, Japan and South Korea are planning to restart business travel between the two countries, starting from 8 October. This is an attempt to improve the relationship between the two countries.

Japan and South Korea have been in talks to launch and resume this travel arrangement since July, in hopes of improving their bilateral ties. With this arrangement, South Korea will be the second country after Singapore which allows for short-term and long-term travel into Japan.

The arrangement here will be that both countries will allow for short-term and long-term essential travel for official and business purposes. The agreement states that those on short-term business trips will not be required to go through the 14-day self-isolation if they are tested positive for COVID-19. As for long-term travelers, they will only be allowed to enter after going through a two-week quarantine period.

Please refer to the authorities for more details on the requirements and safety measures on travel.


'Cruises to Nowhere' from November

Image Credit:  Peter Hansen on Unsplash

After the whole ‘Flight to Nowhere’ saga with SIA, comes another COVID-travel method. ‘Cruise to Nowhere’. The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) has partnered with two cruise lines to get the ball rolling. Genting Cruise Lines’ World Dream and Royal Caribbean International’s Quantum of the Seas were chosen for the first to be part of the ‘Cruise to Nowhere’.

The cruise will be round trips with no port of call while sailing at a lower capacity than usual to make it safer for the current times. Currently, the cruises will only be open to Singapore Residents. This experience is being called a "Seacation" for the residents of Singapore.

Safety has been taken largely into consideration with a number of measures. Other than the reduced passenger load, passengers will have to show negative COVID-19 test results before boarding. While sailing, the cruise ships will have to follow strict sanitation guidelines to minimize the risk as much as possible. Including the already normal safety measures like wearing masks when outside of their rooms, the boarding and disembarking will be staggered to prevent crowds from building.

The first cruise will begin on 6 November this year.


Singapore Air Travel Bubbles

Image Credit:  Mike Enerio on Unsplash

Similar to what is being done by India, Singapore has taken a similar approach to resume flights in and out of the country. Currently, Singapore is moving towards setting up Air Travel Bubbles with a number of countries, that have been deemed safe by the authorities.

These travel bubbles differ from the already established Reciprocal Green Lane arrangements as the travel bubbles will not need a controlled itinerary when traveling.

The number of travelers per day will be controlled as a form of risk management. In addition, travelers will still have to adhere to COVID-19 safety measures and protocols such as COVID-19 testing and acquiring air travel passes before coming here.

This news comes in hand with the other travel resumptions relating to the arrangements with other countries. An example is Japan’s recent removal of a ban on overseas travel to Singapore. All in all, it looks like travel resumptions are on the horizon as for now.

Please refer to the authorities for more details on the requirements and safety measures on travel.


Hawaii Quarantine Requirement Dropped

Image Credit: Cristian Guerrero on Unsplash

Continuing on with the development in Hawaii last week, starting from 15 October onwards, travelers will be allowed to skip going through quarantine if they are able to provide a negative COVID-19 test result. The test has to be taken no more than 72 hours before arrival. Travelers who do not want to be tested can still opt to go through quarantine.

Previously it was reported that they were planning to launch something similar but due to the spike in cases, it was postponed.

Please refer to the authorities for more details on the requirements and safety measures on travel.


AirAsia Japan Shuts Down Operations

Image Credit:  sayhitobel on Unsplash

Another casualty of the global pandemic, the low-cost budget airline, AirAsia Japan, has decided to fold its operations starting this week. Hit hard by the travel restrictions and uncertainties the low demand for travel has been put as the cause of the cessation of operations.

All flights operated by AirAsia Japan has been canceled. To avoid confusion, this will only affect domestic and international flights operated by AirAsia Japan with the code DJ and does not affect the other flights in and out of Japan which are operated by other airlines under the AirAsia Group

All is not bad for the group though as their restaurants serving its in-flight food, Santan, are planned to expand with over 100 branches across the world, by 2022.

Read more on similar in-flight offerings that airlines are turning to in this pandemic on our blog “Get The Full Airline Experience Without Leaving the Ground at these Hotels & Restaurants


Singapore Airlines Reinstate Flights to Four Destinations

Image Credit: Troy Mortier on Unsplash

Inline with the announcement of Singapore’s intent of resuming travel, Singapore Airlines, the country’s national carrier has announced that they will be reinstating flights to four destinations. The four being Fukuoka, Male, Brunei, and Kathmandu. The reinstation will be done over the next three months.

Furthermore, the frequency of the flights to some existing routes will also be increased in the next three months. Some reported changes:

  Now By December
Singapore-Melbourne 1 Daily 2 Flights Daily
Singapore-Bangkok None 1 Daily

While flights to Dhaka, Amsterdam, and Hong Kong will also be increased in frequency.


Interstate Travel Ban Imposed in Sabah, Malaysia

Image Credit: Andy Wang on Unsplash

Due to the recent developments of the COVID-19 situation in Malaysia, an interstate travel ban has been imposed on the Malaysian state of Sabah. Banning travel from the state and the Peninsula, Sarawak, and Labuan. Currently, the ban will be enforced from 12 October to 25 October 2020.

In addition to this, anyone entering the state of Sabah must undergo a COVID-19 test upon arrival.

Please refer to the authorities for more details on the requirements and safety measures on travel.

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