Corona Virus – Effect on Travel in Southeast Asia

A traveller wearing a mask in a city

Contents

16 March 2020 – Due to the rapidly escalating circumstances we have now stopped updating this article. Our advice for foreign travellers is to get back to your home country if it is still possible or find a place where you can stay comfortably for a while.


We are updating this article with reports from travellers in our Facebook group and updates from travel companies we work with in Southeast Asia.

Also read —> Wondering whether to stay in Southeast Asia or go home in the era of COVID-19?

  • Since the Coronavirus first appeared at the end of December 2019, tourist numbers to Southeast Asia have been dropping. While some travellers are naturally afraid of getting the virus, others are much more worried about the effect that it is having on travelling around the area. So how are backpackers who are in Southeast Asia right now being affected?
  • Before we begin, please be clear that this article is simply a discussion about how the Coronavirus (COVID-19) is affecting travellers in Southeast Asia.
  • We are neither encouraging nor discouraging travel to Southeast Asia. We are not medical experts and we are not qualified in the slightest to give an opinion on whether or not it is safe to travel to XX country! For all medical advice please see the World Health Organisation.
  • Furthermore, as the situation is changing day by day, it is important to keep up with local news, government updates and speak to fellow travellers to find out what is happening on the ground. As always, you can search info and get support in the South East Asia Backpacker Facebook Community.
  • Important! If you plan to travel to Southeast Asia or you’re already there, make sure you check what your travel insurance says about the Coronavirus outbreak. You can read the latest advice and FAQs from World Nomads Travel Insurance, Safety Wing and True Traveller Insurance to find out what you are covered for.

As the news is changing every day, we strongly recommend you check official government information on measures against COVID-19. For Vietnam, see here (you may need to ask your browser to translate the page for you), for Thailand, visit this page.


Quick News – 14 March

DISCLAIMER: PLEASE NOTE THAT THIS INFORMATION IS CHANGING BY THE HOUR and it is very difficult to get accurate information right now. While we are trying our best to post regular updates we cannot be 100% sure that this information is correct and we also have to sleep! We have absolutely no interest in spreading fake news. If you have an update or you read something which you believe to be incorrect, please email us with evidence/personal experience and we will consider changing it. If you are unsure if your planned travels will go ahead the best thing to do is to call the relevant embassy and/or your airline. You can also keep up to date in the South East Asia Backpacker Community, but again, we cannot be liable for the accuracy of the information that is posted by members in the group.

Reliable local news sources: CNN Asia or Straits Times.

CAMBODIA

  • 14 March – Cambodia announce a ban on entries of foreigners from Italy, Germany, Spain, France, and the United States for 30 Days to prevent COVID-19, effective from 17 March 2020.
  • They plan to reimburse travellers who have already paid for the e-visa online.

SINGAPORE

PHILIPPINES

  • 13 March – President Duterte of the Philippines announces a lockdown of Metro Manila, a suspension of domestic air and sea travel to/from Manila starting 15th March until 14th April. 
  • There is a ban on entry to all travellers coming from countries which have local infection of COVID-19.
President Duterte announces new coronavirus prevention measures.

INDIA

MALAYSIA

  • Malaysia will bring in travel ban for Italy, Iran, China, South Korea as of March 13th says Health Minister.

VIETNAM

  • Vietnam have banned entry into Vietnam for visitors from the UK and Schengen Zone (or anyone who has travelled through those countries in the last 14 days). This includes Vietnamese passport holders.
  • There are no issuing of visas at the border for foreigners.

  • Vietnam launch app to help COVID-19 containment.
  • A passenger on a flight from London to Hanoi on 1st March was infected with COVID-19 causing 9 infections. This led to travellers in several hostels across Vietnam getting put on lockdown.
  • Central Backpackers Hostel and Buffalo Backpackers Hostel in Hanoi are closed until the end of March.
  • Many Halong Bay Tours are cancelled for the next few days and Cat Ba Island is temporarily closed.
  • Travellers are not allowed to enter Vietnam via the Cambodia/Vietnam land border if they have been in Siem Reap or Sihanoukville in Cambodia in tha last 14 days.

THAILAND

  • Passengers who have flown in from China, Macau, Hong Kong, South Korea, Italy and Iran need to fill out a medical form checked by a doctor when arriving into Thailand.
  • Wat Pa Tam Wua in Northern Thailand is closed (until 20th March) and under quarantine.
  • Life continues as normal in Central and South Thailand.
  • Full Moon Party officially cancelled in March though bars and clubs remain open.

Traveller Experiences of COVID-19 in Southeast Asia in 2020

These comments were recently taken from the South East Asia Backpacker Facebook Community. We are constantly updating this post with new comments as they appear. For the most up to date info, check in the group. Please note – We cannot be held responsible for the accuracy of the comments on this page.

  • 14 March – Vietnam border closes to many nationalities (15 March noon)

Says traveller Kelsey (14th March 2020) – “I’m currently in Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh where things are calm and business is as usual compared to the north). I’m trying to get to Cambodia, and I just was informed that the government is shutting down the Vietnam/Cambodia border as of tomorrow (noon) for US and all European citizens. I was told I can still cross over today, but as of tomorrow the border will be shut down both ways. Hope this helps some of you looking for clarity, and good luck to all of you fellow travellers who are out there on the road!”

  • 12 March – Different experiences across Southeast Asia

Says traveller, John (12 March 2020) – “I am in Hanoi and the atmosphere in the city is not good. Hostels are closing, restaurants are closed and the streets are empty. My visa expires on Saturday, so looking for some up to date information before deciding what my next, maybe safest, move is. I’m from the UK.”

Says traveller, Ella (12 March 2020) – “I’m currently in Phuket, arrived 2 days ago from Vietnam. Had absolutely no problem getting in to Phuket! You’d never even think that corona virus was a thing here right now.. Vietnam was getting stressful especially in Hanoi because of the virus. Most friends who planned to travel Vietnam further either flew home or to different countries as tensions were running high. I say come to Phuket, you should be fine!”

Says traveller, Angelo (12 March 2020) – “I’m Italian, 2 months on the road and don’t know where to go now with the current restrictions… I wanted to go to Malaysia but today they said they won’t let Italians in. Pretty messed up situation right now.”

Says traveller, Mia (12 March 2020) – “I’m in Chiang Mai, Thailand now (I’m American) and had no trouble getting my visa extended. It’s definitely quiet here because of the virus but also because it’s hot and smokey in these parts due to burning season. I was meant to head to Hanoi today but decided for now, it’s best to stay put.”

Says traveller, Chris (12 March 2020) – “Restaurants are closed in Hue, Vietnam.”

Sign outside restaurant in Hue, Vietnam
Sign outside restaurant in Hue, Vietnam.

Says traveller, Paul (12 March 2020) – “We’ve just had two weeks in Tam Coc, Ninh Binh. The last few days most of Tam Coc’s restaurants and stuff have closed as there were a few suspected cases; we tried booking a few different rooms today in the centre of Ninh Binh and they cancelled on us saying that the gov have told them not to accept any bookings.”

  • 12 March – European travellers denied boarding flights to Vietnam

Says traveller, Aicha (12 March 2020) – “Just tried to check into my flight from London Heathrow (I am from the UK) to fly to Vietnam for under 2 weeks. I have been denied access to boarding as everyone needs a visa from today (even if you are going to Vietnam for 1 day). I paid 1k for my flights and no-one seems to want to give it me back.”

  • 12 March – India suspends visas

India has announced that all visas, barring a select few categories, will be suspended for a month in order to halt the spread of COVID-19. (Source: BBC World.)

India's recent visa and travel restrictions.
India’s recent visa and travel restrictions.
  • 11 March – Vietnam visa restrictions for Europeans

Vietnam has stopped issuing e-Visas to foreigners who are from or have recently been in countries where COVID-19 is spreading. See the official portal of Immigration for Vietnam here.

In addition, Vietnam temporarily ceases the 15-day visa exemption policy for Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, UK, Germany, France and Spain from 12 March 2020.

Vietnam E-Visa Portal.
  • 10 March – Medical forms required at Thai Airports to those who have flown from South Korea, China, Hong Kong, Macao, Italy & Iran

Says blogger, Richard Barrow in Thailand, on his Facebook page which is regularly being updated with the COVID-19 latest news (10 March 2020) – “If you’re flying to Thailand from South Korea, China, Hong Kong, Macao, Italy & Iran, you will need to fill in a T8 form to give to Health Control at the airport and also a medical certificate to say you are free from COVID-19. 

Medical questionnaire for passengers arriving into Thailand.
Medical questionnaire for passengers arriving into Thailand.
  • 10 March – Laos/Vietnam Land border still open to some Europeans

Says traveller, Roy (10 March 2020) – “So here is an update regarding our border crossing today! We have left Luang Prabang on a bus to cross over Diem Bien Phu. After not an easy drive of 10 hours we arrived to the Lao border, where they just checked our fever and let us go. After we arrived to the Vietnamese border, where again they checked us through a thermal camera or something and we had to fill out a medical form. We were a bit scared they would make a bit of an issue on our entry as our existing Visa from home is only from tomorrow, but they were okay about it. No other issues occurred and we are now in Vietnam going to Sapa tomorrow morning! To be clear we both hold European passports too.”

  • 10 March – Some restaurants, bars and tours in Hoi An closed

Says traveller Johanne (10 March) – “I’m in Hoi An, Vietnam at the moment. As of yesterday some restaurants/bars were closed and an eco village-cooking class-riverboat trip cancelled on us. Today they closed the Cham Islands apparently, so our diving trip got cancelled.”

Sign outside a restaurant in Hoi An, Vietnam.
  • 9 March – Travellers from 11 countries applying for a Thai Visa in Penang must provide medical certificate

Notice for any travellers applying for a Thai visa in Penang, Malaysia.
Notice for any travellers applying for a Thai visa in Penang, Malaysia.
  • 9 March – Quarantines at hostels in Ninh Binh and Hue, Vietnam

According to VTV World (9 March 2020) – “On Monday afternoon (March 9th), the Vietnamese Ministry of Health confirmed that an Englishman who flew on flight VN0054 showed a positive result for COVID-19. His test sample was sent to the Pasteur Institute of Nha Trang by Quang Nam Provincial Center for Disease Control. The patient is currently receiving treatment at North Quang Nam General Hospital and is in stable condition.”

Says traveller, Tallie (9 March 2020) – “10 of us are in lockdown at a homestay (Tam Coc Mr Loa Homestay) in Ninh Binh/Tam Coc. We are in touch with our embassies who are working with local authorities to bring us food and water.”

Says traveller, Jordan (9 March 2020) – “We’re in Hue, Vietnam at the moment and have just been asked to leave the hotel for an hour while they disinfect the hotel – it seemed to be a guy with a leaf blower blowing solutions into the rooms and floors being mopped with bleach. Wondering if anyone else has experienced this and should we be worried? Not fear mongering here just genuinely curious to see if anyone else has experienced this!”

  • 9 March – Quarantine at Wat Pa Tam Wua Monastery, Northern Thailand

Says traveller, David (9 March 2020) –Wat Pa Tam Wua in Northern Thailand is closed (until 20th March) and under quarantine. There’s also a large quarantine facility outside of Pai. 5,000 people were sent back to Thailand who were illegally working in South Korea. Some were sick and a fair number of those ended up in the area around Pai.”

  • 9 March – Things have gone quiet in Cambodia

Says owner of Triple A Adventures in Siem Reap (9 March 2020) – “It’s like going back in time. This is the same experience I had 18 years ago in Angkor Wat. Almost no tourists. If Cambodia is on your bucket list, then visit in the next couple of months. Soon all the tourists will come back and then its almost impossible to shoot this kind of picture without thousands of tourists!”

Angkor Wat Siem Reap void of touirists during the Coronavirus era.
Angkor Wat Temples in Siem Reap – void of tourists during the Coronavirus era.
  • 9 March – Business as usual in South Thailand

Says New Way Diving owner in Koh Tao (9 March 2020) – “The Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan doesn’t have government support this month, but the bars and clubs are open as normal. So it’s like the old style full moon parties before the government got involved. And because of this it’s also free entry! Diving here is good – waters are clear, and vibe is good. Quiet, but good! The same scenario is currently planned with Songkran I gather – officially it’s not endorsed, but people will be able to ‘play with Water at their own risk’.”

Says Punch It Gym’s owner in Koh Samui (9 March 2020) – “With us the sun is shining nobody talks about this virus and we can train carefree and enjoy life! We invite everyone to enjoy life with us.”

Says Roctopus Dive School in Koh Tao (9 March 2020) – “I can confirm that Koh Tao, Thailand and Roctopus Dive are operating as usual! I cannot comment on travel in and out of Thailand from whatever country. However, I can speak from our teams’ personal experience that we are all still flying in and out as usual and just getting on with daily life as usual. We are not stockpiling food/toilet roll (hail for the bum guns in Thailand anyway!) nor is anyone doing ANYTHING different in fact to how we usually are.”

  • 8 March – Travellers in Banana Tree Hostel, Ninh Binh Quarantined

Says local Vietnamese, Ta Ngan (8 March 2020) – “A Vietnamese traveller on a flight from London to Hanoi on March 1st was found positive with COVID-19. Shortly afterwards, one Vietnamese person and 9 foreign tourists on same flight were found positive in Hanoi, Ninh Binh, Quang Ninh, Da Nang.”

Says traveller, Marije (8 March 2020) – Banana Tree Hostel in Ninh Binh is locked down right now due to two girls on the flight from London to Hanoi where a passenger was infected with COVID-19. Tomorrow they will know if they can open again.”

Says traveller, Tallie (8 March 2020) – “We are in Ninh Binh, Vietnam and today were surprised to find government officials and a locked gate at our accommodation. We have been put into quarantine at our homestay as someone here was on the same flight from London to Hanoi as a passenger infected with Coronavirus. There were also passport checks when we visited Trang An today. Not sure how it is elsewhere though.”

  • 8 March – Several guesthouses in Hue close

Says traveller, Karolina (8 March 2020) – “We’re currently in Ninh Binh. Our hosts here have told us today that Hue (our next destination) also has a case. We’ve now just received the following info from our guesthouse in Hue: “We are really sorry we have to close our hotel because one of the hotels near by us have a guest who has Coronavirus, so we can not open from tomorrow. We have to close to make sure everything in control.”

  • 8 March – Cat Ba Island closed and Halong Bay Tours stopped temporarily

Says Halong Hideaway staff (8 March 2020) – “We regret to inform you that according to the Government directions, to prevent Coronavirus from spreading over the country, tours to Halong Bay and Lan Ha Bay are not allowed to be arranged tomorrow and may be some days later. The official document says that people from affected countries are not allowed to travel, however we do not have a list of specific countries. We are receiving directions daily.”

Says traveller, Cynthia (8 March 2020) – “We just met some people who were told to get off the boat in Cat Ba today before their Halong Bay cruise started because the military was shutting down the bay. They had to come back to Ninh Binh. We are looking for some official news online but can’t find any.”

  • 8 March – Several flights to UK from Indonesia cancelled

Says traveller, Annie (8 March 2020) – “My boyfriend and I just found out today that the first leg of our flights home from Bali to Newcastle UK has been cancelled. We’re flying British Airways. No email, phone call, nothing. They didn’t let us know. We only found out by chance. So my advice is to keep an eye on your flights and bookings. Doesn’t seem like BA would have informed us at all, as apparently it’s their policy to keep the website up to date and not to individually contact customers. They also don’t have an online chat service only a telephone number, which was a pain to call from Asia as neither of us has Skype. Then once we did get through, their automated voice tells you that they are experiencing very high call volumes and to only call if it’s urgent but unfortunately they can’t connect you right now, and promptly cuts you off!.”

  • 8 March – Travellers from 27 European countries disallowed entry into Vietnam at Cambodia land border

Vietnam restrictions for COVID-19.
List of nationalities not allowed to enter Vietnam at the Bavet/Moc Bai border crossing. This list was presented to a traveller on a Giant Ibis bus from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City on 8 March 2020.

Says traveller, Tressy (9 March 2020) – “I have been in Phnom Penh, Camnodia and many European passport holders came back to the hostel after trying to cross into Vietnam at the nearby land border. The next day (yesterday – 9 March) most of them flew to Ho Chi Minh City from Phnom Penh and were allowed entry at the airport (including Swedish, German, French among others). Please be aware that things are changing hourly so this may change tomorrow!”

Says traveller, Sandra (8 March 2020) – “My boyfriend and I have been travelling SE Asia since the beginning of January 2020. We we went to Thailand for 6 weeks then continued on to Cambodia where we’ve been for 10 days now. We were planning to go to Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia before going back home.

Yesterday, we were heading with Giant Ibis from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh and were planning to spend a month in Vietnam. We even booked a flight from Hanoi to Manila on the day our Vietnamese visa would have expired.

At the Bavet border, European citizens were denied entry (except UK citizens, who were allowed in). They just looked at our nationality and then at this list of countries on a PDF they had opened on a smartphone, and if your country was on it, they said “sorry” – and that was it. Even though we had filled out medical control sheets, and even though there was clear evidence in our passports that we had been outside of Europe since before the outbreak.

We are completely lost now and have no idea what to do next. We are thinking if it’s worth continuing our travels or if it’s better to go back home and wait for this pandemic to blow over. Our primary concern is that other countries are going to start closing down borders and not letting people in and we might get stuck somewhere we don’t want to be.”

Says traveller, Carys (8 March 2020) – “I am just at the border of Cambodia to Vietnam, crossing at Moc Bai from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh. Vietnam have just released a list of 26 European countries which cannot enter. Basically most of mainland Europe. No one knew this so people have been turned away. Spanish, Italian, German, French etc. Most haven’t even been in Europe since the outbreak. Some had flights to go home from vietnam tomorrow. 

It’s annoying because the bus companies told them once they were on the bus that they couldn’t enter. But they let them pay and travel all the way here. Now they have to find a bus back. Also I’ve just been told by friends in the North of Vietnam that people are being quarantined in hostels. It just started today. And things are all shutting down too.”

Says traveller, Sandra (8 March 2020) – “What this has taught us is that you definitely shouldn’t plan/book too far in advance or you might end up losing a lot of money. This is what happened to a Hungarian couple who were on the same bus as us from Cambodia to Vietnam and were denied entry. Apparently they had several flights booked for the next few months!”

  • 5 March – Full Moon Party Cancelled in Koh Phangan, Thailand

Says traveller, Cassy (5 March 2020) – “I just read that the Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan is cancelled. If you’re already in Southeast Asia of course you can still go to the island and have a good time, despite the cancellation of the party – they really need the tourist dollars right now!”

Koh Phangan’s Full Moon Party was suspended on 5th March until further notice.
  • 5 March – Vietnam ban entry for travellers from several countries

Says Vietnamese hostel worker, Duyen (5 March 2020) – “Due to strict Coronavirus prevention measures, Vietnam is now not allowed to receive guests from the following countries: China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, Iran, Italy, Germany and Singapore. We are praying that the situation gets better soon.”

Says hostel worker, Tim (5 March 2020) – “News just in, Vietnam have banned all people coming in from several countries, whether you are a citizen of that country or have been passing through there in the last 2 weeks. If you still come, you’ll be in quarantine for 2 weeks.”

Says traveller, Natalie (5 March 2020) – “I’m Italian and I can confirm that Vietnam are not granting us the 15-day visa exemption anymore and it’s rejecting e-visas. That’s confirmed by our Ministry of Foreign Affairs too. That’s a bummer because not even Italians living abroad, like me, are likely to get into Vietnam.”

  • 5 March – Travellers who have recently been in China quarantined in New Zealand

Says traveller, Paul (5 March 2020) – “Anyone with onward travel to New Zealand who has visited China will not be allowed into the country. Anyone who has visited Italy, Iran or Korea must self-isolate for a period of 14 days upon arrival. There are different rules for New Zealand nationals or residents who must contact immigration border operations before boarding the plane.”

  • 4 March – “It’s like Southeast Asia 20 years ago”

Says travel blogger, Etienne (4 March 2020) – “Things are indeed slowing down in Asia. Right now, it’s best place to come for the more adventurous people as most of the tourists are gone! It’s like Asia 20 years ago.”

Says traveller, Jaimee (3 March 2020) – “I’m in the Philippines right now and honestly it’s like travelling at a quieter time of year (right now is high season). It’s been excellent and I kinda forget the virus is a thing until I get reception and read the news.”

Says traveller, Allison (4 March 2020) – “I live in Koh Phangan, Thailand right now and I don’t feel like I’d be any safer where I moved from in Oregon. The risk is everywhere. Vietnam seems even safer than most Asian countries.”

Says traveller, Johanne (2 March 2020) – “Should you travel to Southeast Asia right now? It is very much up to you and what your comfort zone is, currently in Mui Ne making our way up north, and not too worried. A lot less people around than expected once you’re out of the big cities, and surreal landing at HCM Airport with almost no other tourists.”

  • 4 March – Vietnam respond tough to Coronavirus

Says traveller, Dominyka (3 March 2020) – “We are in Vietnam right now and I feel the safest here out of all SE Asian countries that I have been travelling to in the past months. Vietnam has been very strict with letting in people from affected countries. Many many people are wearing masks so it feels that people are taking it seriously and protecting themselves. Many hotels/hostels and restaurants have hand sanitisers that you can use. Currently, as far as I know, all 16 reported cases have recovered. They even made a song about it!”

 

Says traveller, Kayla (29 Feb 2020) – Vietnam is getting more and more strict about letting people into the country who are transiting through infected areas. They are disallowing entry to anyone who has been in China in the past 14 days.”

  • 29 February – Travellers who have had layover in China disallowed entry

Says traveller, Milo (29 Feb 2020) – “You can’t enter Thailand, Vietnam or Indonesia if you have recently done a layover in China or South Korea.”

Says traveller, Rabaca (29 Feb 2020) – “If you have a flight booked that transits through China or South Korea, Contact your airline because I was supposed to fly from London to Bali connecting in Guangzhou in China and my flight got cancelled.”

Says traveller, Shakora (29 Feb 2020) – “Found out minutes ago that going through South Korea to Vietnam will result in a 14 day quarantine when I arrive in Vietnam. I have to cancel my trip!”

Says traveller, Apoorva (29 Feb 2020) – “I have Japan>South Korea>Vietnam coming up in a month and the rules change several times a day so I don’t know what’s gonna end up happening!”

  • 27 February – Temperature checks and spray downs at airports in SE Asia

Says traveller, Jeremiah (27 Feb 2020) – “I just flew into Chiang Mai this week, Flying to Krabi today and then Bali the first week of March. Flying into Chiang Mai they sprayed me down in the airport, but once you are through the departure gates things seem normal. I’m guessing Bangkok has the same procedure right now.”

Says traveller, Gabriella (25 Feb 2020) – “I’ve travelled through Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore during the Coronavirus outbreak and I haven’t had any direct issues. If you have been to China/or citizen then they tell you to go to a different desk upon arrival at the airport. Some tourist places in Singapore are temperature reading people before you go in (including some restaurants at the airport). But other than that it hasn’t effected me at all, I just wear masks while travelling and making sure I sanitise/wash my hands thoroughly.”

  • 25 February – Fewer tourists and discounts on hotels

Says traveller, Andrea (25 Feb 2020) – “We have been traveling around India and Nepal and a lot of people are wearing masks, mostly cheap imitations which are no good anyway, but it makes them feel better. I agree hygiene is the most important thing. We do have decent masks for the airports. I saw a clip on TV the other day that said that the trays at security in airports are the worst breeders for infections and to make sure to wash, sanities hand straight afterwards.”

Says traveller, Ellisha (25 Feb 2020) – “We have had no issues at all with the Coronavirus so far, but then I’ve never been to China. I’ve seen screenings etc. at airports, and one hotel we stayed at in Da Nang, Vietnam had a sign saying that they weren’t accepting Chinese guests but that’s it so far.”

Says traveller, Stewart (25 Feb 2020) – “Been travelling through Thailand for the last month and not had any problems. There are people wearing masks a lot in Bangkok (which is mostly down to the recent pollution) but that’s about it. There are far less tourists here, so to be honest its been great!”

Says traveller, Stefanie (25 Feb 2020) – “The only thing I see is less people everywhere. For me, a person who doesn’t like crowded places, it’s awesome. For the businesses it’s shit of course.”

Says traveller, Joannda (25 Feb 2020) – “No issues in the Philippines or Cambodia. We were temperature checked a few times in the Philippines and given an information leaflet about what to do if you feel ill. We wear masks at airports and on planes and are diligent about washing hands.”

Says traveller, Nicole (25 Feb 2020) – “Been to Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand since the outbreak, and heading to Japan tomorrow. The only difference I’ve noticed is that you don’t see any Chinese tourists anywhere, other than that it’s pretty much business as usual.”

Says traveller, India (25 Feb 2020) – “A few islands in Thailand are temperature checking everyone as they arrive off the ferries. Also there are thermal cameras installed all through Changi Airport in Singapore. Other than that there’s not really any commotion.”

Says traveller, Radley (25 Feb 2020) – “I’ve been travelling around Southeast Asia for the past month and a half, I’ve had absolutely no issues. I came into Singapore just this morning with no problems at all. The only issues I’ve really seen is flights to and from mainland china being cancelled but anywhere else seems to be fine!”

Says traveller, Sam (25 Feb 2020) – “It’s much quieter and a few places are having flash sales on accommodation to get people in. We paid 40 GBP for a night at a 4-star hotel that would normally be 80 GBP. We’ve had to fill out extra forms about our health, and have had our temperatures taken at airports but it’s simply done as you walk past so no hold up.”

Says traveller, Becky (25 Feb 2020) – “The only change is that there are less Chinese tourists and occasionally you get your temperature taken every time you enter a port (this is from my experience in the Philippines over the least 2 weeks).”

Says traveller, Brenda (25 Feb 2020) – “I have been in the Philippines for the last 3 weeks and I have been occasionally temperature checked and had to fill out a few forms. I have seen very few people outside the airports wearing masks. A lot of shops now have signs up saying no masks available. Boracay is quieter due to no Chinese, but prices remain the same.”

Says traveller, Christian (25 Feb 2020) – “What does it matter what people have experienced in the past? Every day is a new situation with that virus. You don’t know what will happen in March.”

And on that note from Christian, we have to admit that he is right! Keep up to date with what is going on in travel in Southeast Asia daily in our Facebook Group and wash your hands wherever you are!

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