Attractions including the Singapore Zoo and Universal Studios Singapore will be allowed to reopen from Wednesday, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) announced yesterday.
They have been closed for nearly three months, since the start of Singapore’s circuit breaker on April 7.
STB said the two are among 13 pre-approved attractions permitted to resume operations in stages.
They are: the Flower Dome at Gardens by the Bay; Jurong Bird Park; River Safari; Singapore Zoo; the ArtScience Museum, the casino and SkyPark observation deck at Marina Bay Sands; Universal Studios Singapore, S.E.A. Aquarium and the casino at Resorts World Sentosa; Madame Tussauds wax museum on Sentosa; trampoline park Bounce and virtual reality arcade Zero Latency.
Most will be restricted to no more than 25 per cent of their operating capacity at any one time, and access to the casinos will be limited to existing members and annual levy holders only for the time being, STB said.
Other attractions and domestic tour operators can submit reopening proposals to the STB for assessment, and may resume operations only after receiving approval from the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
Proposals must illustrate how safe management measures will be tailored to reduce the transmission risk of Covid-19 for each attraction or tour, STB said.
While retail shops and most other businesses have been allowed to resume in phase two of the economy’s reopening, entertainment outlets and attractions have had to remain shut as they were deemed to pose a higher risk of transmission of the coronavirus.
STB chief executive Keith Tan said that in Singapore’s gradual reopening of the tourism sector, the board’s priority will be to ensure that businesses can provide a safe and enjoyable experience for visitors.
“While it will be some time before Singapore can fully welcome international visitors, we hope Singaporeans and residents of Singapore will enjoy what our tourism businesses have to offer in a socially responsible way,” he said.
SUPPORT LOCAL TOURISM INDUSTRY SAFELY
While it will be some time before Singapore can fully welcome international visitors, we hope Singaporeans and residents of Singapore will enjoy what our tourism businesses have to offer in a socially responsible way.
STB CHIEF EXECUTIVE KEITH TAN
Ms Jean Wang, chairman of the Society of Tourist Guides Singapore, said: “We are pleased that tours can now resume, following several challenging months.”
Trade and Industry Minister Chan Chun Sing said in a Facebook post yesterday that the Government has been working to help tourism-related businesses resume their activities safely and to save jobs in the hard-hit industry.
STB has been advising tourism businesses on required safety measures and 13 have already been given the green light to reopen, he noted.
“We will progressively allow more tourism businesses to reopen, with those who are able to put in place the additional measures in a comprehensive manner to resume operations first,” he wrote.
Mr Chan also called on Singaporeans to support local tourism businesses, something echoed by Senior Minister of State for Trade and Industry Chee Hong Tat in a separate Facebook post.
Mr Chee wrote: “The tourism sector will take a long time to recover, as we do not expect international travel to return to its previous levels before a vaccine is developed. For attractions and tours, operators need to attract local customers during this period.”
Mr Chee noted that families were likely looking forward to spending time together at popular attractions such as Gardens by the Bay and the Singapore Zoo.
But he also urged caution, saying: “I encourage you to do so to support our operators, but please also remember to observe safe distancing measures to protect yourself and the community.”