Malaysia to open international borders
March should see the reopening of Malaysia’s international borders to vaccinated travellers. The country has been closed to most of the world for almost two years although it has had a travel lane and a tourism bubble to Langkawi for vaccinated Singaporeans since November.
From March 1 the country will open to all travellers that are fully vaccinated without need for quarantine. All that will be required will be proof of a negative test before departure and another test upon arrival. Details of what type of test and whether covid-19 related insurance will be mandatory are yet to be announced.
Tourism ministry statistics show that Malaysia lost about 165 billion ringgit ($39 billion) in visitor spending for 2021 and some 826,000 people have lost their jobs as a result of lockdowns and closures.
Most other countries in the region are gradually easing restrictions. The Philippines has recently opened, Thailand and Cambodia are both open to vaccinated travellers and Indonesia is considering lifting all quarantine requirements for visitors in April. At present visitors are only allowed to fly into Bali though the five-day quarantine is soon to be reduced to three.
Picture: Kuala Lumpur skyline showing the Petronas Twin Towers