Riau Islands cancel travel bubble with S'pore citing high Covid-19 cases

Previously delayed in July due to rising Covid-19 cases in both countries.

Faris Alfiq | October 07, 2021, 05:43 PM

The travel bubble plan between Riau Islands and Singapore, slated to take place in October, has been cancelled due to a spike in Covid-19 cases in Singapore.

Governor Ansar Ahmad said on Oct. 6 the cancellation was because Covid-19 cases in Singapore "remains high", according to Indonesian news agency Antara.

Ansar was speaking at Tanjung Pinang, the capital city of Riau Islands

He added that the administration of Riau Islands is looking forward to attracting tourists, both domestic and overseas.

However, it depends on the Indonesian government's decision to resume the travel bubble in the future among Indonesian provinces, and with Singapore.

Previously delayed

According to Jakarta Post, earlier in July, Indonesia's Minister for Tourism and Creative Economy Sandiaga Uno announced that the Indonesian government had delayed plans to establish a travel corridor with Singapore as the number of Covid-19 cases was on the rise in both countries.

Sandiaga said the tourism ministry will be focusing on opening travel corridors to Bali, Batam and Bintan, as these places are among the top travel destinations for Singaporeans.

In September, Tempo reported that there has been "positive signals" in plans to reopen borders between Riau Islands and Singapore.

Indonesia prepared MoU to be submitted to Singapore

Riau Islands' Department of Tourism said the Indonesian government has been preparing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on tourism to be submitted to the Singapore's government.

"The MoU involved several ministries, including the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy, Foreign Affairs and Law," the head of the department of tourism, Buralimar said on Sep. 14.

He described the MoU as an "important step" to boost Singapore travellers to the islands, Tempo reported.

Top image via Bintan Resorts/Facebook