Singapore’s new mask guidelines: what you need to know

New mask measures in Singapore finally in effect

Singapore. Starting on 29 August, the new mask measures announced by PM Lee during his National Day Rally speech are finally in effect. People in Singapore are no longer required to wear masks, except in healthcare facilities and public transport.

Here’s everything you need to know about the new mask measures, as announced by the Ministry of Health.

Transportation

Setting Is Mask Wearing Required?
Public buses Yes
MRT/LRT Services Yes
Private bus services (such as company and school buses) No (but depends on operators)
Other train services No (but depends on operators)
Taxis and private-hire cars No (but depends on operators)
Transportation premises Is Mask Wearing Required?
Boarding areas of indoor bus interchanges Yes
Naturally ventilated bus interchanges No
Retail areas of bus interchanges No
Boarding areas of underground train platforms Yes
Retail areas of MRT/LRT stations No

Keep in mind that private operators may still require passengers and employees to wear a mask as part of their policy.

Flights

For international flights, mask-wearing measures depend on the rules of the airline and destination of choice.

“The carrier may have requirements imposed based on his country of origin as well, so where there’s a mandatory requirement for masks to be worn … the mask must be worn on the flight itself,” said MOH director of medical services Kenneth Mak.

For example, in countries such as the US where mask-wearing is optional, passengers can choose not to wear a mask.

The same rules also take effect for ferries and commercial flights heading to Singapore.

According to Singapore Airlines, they will not be requiring passengers to wear a mask on flights unless the destination mandates it.

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Setting Is Mask Wearing Required?
Outbound and inbound commercial

flights/ferries from Singapore to destination

that do not require mask-wearing onboard

No
Outbound and inbound commercial

flights/ferries from Singapore to destination

that require mask-wearing onboard

Yes

Healthcare facilities

Residential care homes, ambulances, and other healthcare facilities will keep mask-wearing measures. However, masks will not be required at physiotherapy and allied health clinics for other services such as occupational therapy and speech therapy.

Setting Is Mask Wearing Required?
Emergency ambulances/medical transport vehicles Yes
Nursing homes including hospices Yes
Psychiatric sheltered and rehabilitation homes Yes
Welfare homes and sheltered homes for the aged Yes
Disability hostels/adult disability homes Yes
Hospitals, polyclinics, general practitioner dental clinics, national specialty centres Yes
COVID-19 care facilities, testing centres, vaccination centres Yes
TCM, specialist, GP and dental clinics located inside shopping malls Yes
Retail and F&B establishments and common areas located within polyclinics, national specialty centres, and hospital buildings Yes
Physiotherapy and other allied health clinics located outside hospitals No
Retail establishments and area in other buildings No
Retail pharmacies within shopping malls No
Non-residential community services (community mental health services, home care services, day care services, centre-based services) No

Schools

Mask-wearing measures have been eased in schools and are not needed during classes.

The children do need to be able to see the facial expressions of their teachers and of each other,” said PM Lee, adding that this is crucial for their learning and development.

Food handlers

Mask-wearing measures will continue to be enforced for food handlers, according to the Singapore Food Agency.

“All food handlers will still be required to wear over his nose and mouth a mask or spit guard that is capable of preventing any substance expelled from his mouth or nose from contaminating food,” said the SFA.

This applies to everyone engaged in the preparation and sale of food and drinks including slaughterhouses, food processing establishments, non-retail food establishments, coffee shops, hawkers centres, supermarkets, restaurants, trade fairs, and others.

However, face shields are not allowed because they have a large gap at the bottom.

According to Senior Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment Amy Khor, people who are tasked to collect payments and bring food to consumers do not need to wear masks. The same rule applies to those who do cleaning work.

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