Exploring Germany: S'pore residents travelling under VTL scheme share their tips

The first Singapore residents to visit Germany under the new Vaccinated Travel Lane scheme have just returned home or are still holidaying there.
The first Singapore residents to visit Germany under the new Vaccinated Travel Lane scheme have just returned home or are still holidaying there.PHOTOS: CHAN BROTHERS, ANNETTE LEE, FRANCESCA STUMPACHER, DESMOND CHAN

The first Singapore residents to visit Germany under the new Vaccinated Travel Lane (VTL) scheme - which started on Sept 8 - have just returned home or are still holidaying there.

At a time when VTLs are rolling out at a quickened pace, their experiences in Germany show that it is possible to travel safely during the global pandemic.

From Oct 19, vaccinated travellers will also be able to fly to Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Britain and the United States. 

The scheme will be extended to South Korea from Nov 15.

Pandemic trips are safe, zestful with new Vaccinated Travel Lane

Travellers have been inquiring about itineraries in Germany, which may include castle tours and Christmas markets.

In the coming weeks, travel-famished Singaporeans will have a fuller choice of quarantine-free destinations, though Germany has a first-mover advantage.

An SIA spokesman says "demand remains strong" for Frankfurt and Munich VTL flights, which carry a mix of Singapore and Germany residents.

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Actress-singer Annette Lee swings by alpine lakes and Munich

The couple chanced upon a late-summer parade of cows bedecked with flowery headdresses in a small town edging an alpine lake in Bavaria.

They also dined on molecular-cuisine "laksa" crafted with squid sashimi strands and clear broth at a two-Michelin-starred restaurant in Munich.

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Semi-retiree Desmond Chan treks solo in scenic Bavaria

He was trekking among alpine mountains and meadows in Germany, days after Singapore's first Vaccinated Travel Lane launched on Sept 8.

"The summer is short and you never know when there will be another lockdown," he says of his swift decision to travel. "Seize the day. Why wait?"

So enthused was he about taking his first flight out of Singapore that he hiked alone - another first - when his wife could not join him. She gave her blessings and soon he was revelling in the great outdoors of Bavaria, a scenic, south-eastern state.

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Marketing manager Francesca Stumpacher takes spontaneous 'workation'

Ms Stumpacher spent a month in Austria and Spain, then spontaneously added a 23-day "workation" in Germany while she was still on the move.

The Austrian national works in Singapore for a regenerative food company, and discovered during her trip that re-entry approval from the Ministry of Manpower would take longer than anticipated. That was not the case when she travelled to Austria in October last year.

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Family reunion and Baltic respite for hotel executive Usha Brockmann

Ms Brockmann is a Singaporean with deep roots in Germany, for her husband is German and they lived in the country from 1997 to 2007. Moreover, she is fluent in German as she was working during that decade.

She says: "It came as a pleasant surprise that this travel lane was established for Germany, which made the decision to travel fairly easy except for the 21-day consecutive stay requirement."

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