The current reopening of regular international flights is appropriate to soon recover the economy. However, the regulation of 7-day quarantine in the opinion of experts will be difficult to attract tourists to Vietnam.
At a seminar on reopening safe international routes on the morning of November 10, Vo Huy Cuong, Deputy Director of the Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam, said that on November 8, the Ministry of Transport reported to the Government the plan to open regular international flights. Based on the practice and experience of other countries. The Ministry of Transport has submitted a flexible international flight schedule that can be adjusted according to actual deployment.
Currently, countries are reopening international flights after a long period of closure such as the US, Australia... Even Thailand which has opened its doors to Vietnamese and Singaporean visitors, they do not have to be quarantined. These countries also set out a roadmap to reopen international flights through the process of accumulating experience in epidemic prevention and control and the wide coverage of Covid-19 vaccination.
Nguyen Le Phuc, Deputy Director of the National Administration of Vietnam Tourism said that according to the pilot guidance to welcome international tourists to Vietnam after entering the country, guests must undergo medical isolation for 7 days. During this time, guests do not have to stay in the room but can still travel, participate in sightseeing activities, services in a closed area, do not contact with local people in the first 7 days. After 7 days guests can participate in community activities.
Proposal to remove the 7-day quarantine
A representative of Vietnam Airlines said that reopening international flights to serve visitors for investment, trade, tourism, etc., and the most concerned issues are immigration and isolation policies. However, the policy of 7 days of concentrated isolation, 7 days of home isolation only attracts returnees, and if you want to attract tourists, you must change the isolation policy.
Therefore, Vietnam Airlines proposes to remove the 7-day quarantine for markets that are assessed to be well controlled with a high percentage of the population having been vaccinated; Guests who have had 2 injections, have a negative Covid-19 test before and after the flight, can be isolated or isolated for 1 day.
Mr. Nguyen Huy Nga, former director of the Department of Preventive Medicine, Ministry of Health said that the countries around us have opened their doors and have gentler health regulations than Vietnam. We are required to be isolated for 7 days, but Thailand only requires testing 72 hours before and testing after arriving in Thailand, having a vaccine passport. Thus, guests to Thailand only stay one night at the hotel, the next day if PCR is negative, they can go everywhere.
According to Mr. Nga, if you have been vaccinated and tested negative, it is relatively safe for people around. Therefore, if you have been vaccinated and tested negative, it is safe and you do not need to be isolated for 7 days.
However, in order to open international flights, it is necessary to prepare more for the ministry of health in terms of legality, guidance as well as preparation of treatment facilities.
“Opening an international flight is necessary, it is important for the ministry of health to be prepared. There needs to be an agreement between the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Health ... to have more specific regulations on visitors, "said Mr. Nga.
Vaccine passport needs test result data
The representative of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism said that it should be extended to all guests with full visas and passports in accordance with regulations, that is, not limited to visitors, from repatriates, experts, and business travelers, visitors to Vietnam.
With the vaccine passport, the countries have basically recognized each other with the vaccination certificate.. What Vietnam must do is the vaccination certificate on the electronic software for uniformity and recognition among countries.
According to the guidance of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, all guests traveling to Vietnam must have health insurance or travel insurance that covers the cost of Covid-19 treatment in Vietnam, with a maximum payment of $50,000. .
Regarding vaccine passports to Vietnam, a representative of the Consular Department (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) said that currently, Vietnam has temporarily recognized the certificate of vaccination against Covid-19 for 72 countries and territories. These countries also recognized Vietnam's certificate of vaccination against Covid-19. In which, there are many countries that are important economic and tourism partners of Vietnam such as Japan, Korea, China, Australia, European countries...
However, the vaccine passport is only recognized provisionally due to the large number of certificate samples and different samples, using many different vaccines, so it takes time for countries to negotiate. This negotiation process is being carried out in parallel between Vietnam and about 80 countries and territories.
Mr. Vo Huy Cuong added that airlines and passengers are very interested in vaccine passports. Countries recognize digital vaccine passports, which include data such as test results, recovered, full doses of vaccine, type of vaccine, even just an antibody test is recognized.
It's time to pilot the reopening of regular international routes to welcome incoming international passengers. And then, to draw lessons for the next stages, promptly take advantage of opportunities. So far, Thailand and Singapore have opened their doors to welcome many visitors from many countries who do not have to be quarantined, including Vietnamese tourists.