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Ministry of Health (MOH) Public Health Advisory

Please refer to the MOH COVID-19 website for updates on the latest precautionary measures implemented to further reduce the risk of importation of COVID-19 to Singapore. These include travel advisories and further restrictions on travellers coming into Singapore.

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Since the Easter Sunday bomb attacks on 21 April 2019, there have been no further major security incidents in Sri Lanka. As there is still the risk of terrorist cells existing, security has been tightened at key installations including places of worship, tourist locations and airports.

Singaporeans travelling to Sri Lanka are advised to exercise caution. If you are already in Sri Lanka, you are strongly advised to stay vigilant and take all necessary precautions for your personal safety, including to monitor the news closely and heed the instructions of the local authorities. You should avoid public places where there are large gatherings of people. Do stay in touch with your family and friends so that they know you are safe. You should also purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.

Singaporeans are strongly encouraged to eRegister with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at https://eregister.mfa.gov.sg/. Those in need of consular assistance may contact the Honorary Consulate - General in Colombo at +94-11-5577300, +94-11-230444, +94-11-5577111 or the  Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office (24 hours) at +65 6379 8800 /+65 6379 8855.

 

All airports will be closed to all inbound international commercial passenger flights (i.e. arrivals) until further notice. 

Sri Lanka has lifted its lockdown but the government has urged people to adhere to all anti-virus guidelines. State and private sector works can resume work for a limited number of employees. Employees must produce a letter from their employer which would allow them to travel during the curfew. Buses and trains will only transport those going to work. The curfew in force in Colombo and Gampaha will continue until 23 May 2020. In other districts, the curfew will be in force from 8:00pm to 5:00am daily until 16 May 2020. The curfew will be imposed island-wide on 17 May 2020. From 5:00am on 18 May 2020, curfew will be relaxed except for the districts of Colombo and Gampaha.

The Sri Lankan government has also suspended all types of visa issuance for all foreigners, including nationals of Singapore and other countries which are exempted from the Electronic Travel Authorisation (ETA) facility. All types of Electronic Travel Authorisations (ETA), Entry Visas, Landing Endorsements, Multiple Entry Visas and Residence Visas already granted to all foreign nationals who have not yet arrived in Sri Lanka will be temporarily suspended and they will not be allowed to enter Sri Lanka until further notice. The validity period of all types of visas for foreign nationals currently in the country has been extended until 11 June 2020. All applicants are advised to pay the relevant visa fee and get the visa endorsed in the Passport by securing an appointment via the following link (https://eservices.immigration.gov.lk/vs). All visas which expire between 7 March to 11 June 2020 will be exempted from overstay penalty. 

Enquiries can be made at 0771588724, and the public is advised to refrain from visiting the Department of Immigration and Emigrations during this period. You may wish to refer to https://srilanka.travel/covid19/ and https://immigration.gov.lk/web/?lang=en for more information.

You may also wish to refer to the website of the Sri Lankan Ministry of Foreign Relations, at https://www.mfa.gov.lk, and the Sri Lankan government’s official news portal at https://www.news.lk, for information on entry restrictions. As entry restrictions may change at short notice, we advise you to contact the Sri Lankan High Commission in Singapore to ensure that you have accurate information for your specific purpose prior to departure.

Violent crime occurs in areas frequented by tourists. Foreigners may be targets of drink spiking, sexual assault, and theft. Be aware of your surroundings and take care of your belongings. Avoid walking alone at night. 

Due to continued tensions and unrest, the military maintains a presence in the north and east of Sri Lanka. Travel restrictions may be imposed, along with roadblocks and curfews. Comply with the instructions of the local authorities. Carry identification with you at all times. 

Credit card fraud is prevalent. Keep your credit card in sight when performing transactions and check for card skimming devices on ATMs.

Drug offences carry heavy penalties. Pack your own luggage and do not accept ‘gifts’ from strangers or new acquaintances.

Smoking and drinking in public places should generally be avoided. Comply with local practices and advice. 

There are strict laws regarding Buddhist images and artefacts. It is illegal to pose for a photo next to a statue of Buddha. Buddhist images should not be used on tattoos, jewellery, or clothing. It is illegal to export artefacts and antiques without the necessary approval. 

 

Overseas Travel – Be Informed & Be Safe [13 November 2019]

In view of the upcoming school holidays, Singaporeans planning overseas travel are reminded to take the necessary precautions, including being prepared to deal with accidents, natural disasters or terrorist attacks. Singaporeans are also reminded to be familiar with your destination’s local laws and customs restrictions, including immigration procedures and entry requirements.

Singaporeans travelling to and from Malaysia, in particular via the land checkpoints, are reminded to ensure that your passport is presented to a Malaysian immigration officer and stamped correctly before leaving the Malaysian immigration booth. Failure to do so is an immigration offence in Malaysia and the penalties can be severe, including detention, a fine, and a ban from future entry into the country.

In 2019, demonstrations have occurred in several major cities across the world. Such demonstrations can sometimes escalate into violence. It is important for Singaporeans to keep abreast of local news, avoid any protests or demonstrations and heed the advice of the local authorities. 

When participating in outdoor leisure activities overseas, Singaporeans should be mindful that certain sporting activities, especially in open seas, may carry risks. Besides ensuring that one has the physical competencies and appropriate condition to undertake the activity, every effort should be made to ascertain if the trip organiser or guide is reliable and competent, and that appropriate safety and contingency plans are in place. When in doubt, Singaporeans should consult the relevant professional bodies or sporting associations for specific advice.

For those planning to travel, here are some tips:

Before travelling

·  Familiarise yourself with our network of overseas missions.

·  Purchase comprehensive travel insurance and be familiar with the terms and coverage.

·  Equip yourself with research about your destination’s entry requirements, current situation, local laws and customs.

·  eRegister with us on our website (https://www.mfa.gov.sg) so that we may reach out to you during an emergency.

 

While travelling

·  Always take care of your personal safety, remain vigilant and monitor local weather news, advisories, and security developments.

·  Exercise caution around large gatherings and avoid locations known for demonstrations or disturbances.

·  Be prepared for possible delays and last-minute changes in travel plans especially during unforeseen events such as natural disasters, social unrests or terror attacks.

·  Stay connected with your friends and family. Inform them of your whereabouts and provide them with your overseas contact details.

In the event that you require consular assistance, please contact the nearest Singapore Overseas Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

 

Advisory: Email Scams [Updated: 12 May 2016]

There has been an increasing number of reports in recent years of individuals receiving scam emails purportedly sent from friends in distress overseas.  These emails typically originate from an email address known to the receiver bearing claims of the sender getting into trouble overseas and urgently requesting financial assistance.  The sender would also claim to have approached a Singapore Embassy/Consulate and the local Police for help to no avail.

MFA takes the safety of all Singaporeans very seriously.  Singaporeans in distress approaching our Overseas Missions for assistance will be rendered with all necessary consular assistance.  If you receive such emails from purported friends seeking funds transfers, we strongly advise you to call them first to verify the authenticity of the emails before responding to their request.  It is also not advisable to give out any personal information such as NRIC/passport nos., address, telephone number, etc.  Any form of reply, even one of non-interest, could result in more unsolicited emails.  Members of the public who suspect that they have fallen prey to such scams should report the matter to the Police immediately.  Should Singaporeans abroad require consular assistance, they can contact the nearest Mission or call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs 24-hr Duty Office at +65 6379 8800/+65 6379 8855.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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