a group of people walking on a hill

I can almost smell the fresh herbs dancing off the banh mi and into my mouth as I write this. Sure, a local takeout can be good, but it’s never quite as good as the genuine article, when you taste iconic food in a stunning destination.

With news that Vietnam is actively looking to reopen, and simultaneously roll back most covid-19 related restrictions at the same time, that savory bite, and the inevitably beautiful viewpoint behind it are starting to feel real again.

Is this the travel reopening we’ve been hoping for? It’s starting to feel that way, as yet another Southeast Asian gem announces reopening plans.

boats in the water with a boat in it with Ha Long Bay in the background

Vietnam Opening To Visitors

Months ahead of schedule, Vietnam is poised to reopen to international travelers.

Under the newly unveiled plans which are pending final approval from the Prime Minister, Vietnam will welcome visitors starting March 15th, 2022 and all arrivals would be expected to test before departure and self quarantine for one day on arrival. It’s not immediately clear if proof of vaccination will be required, but it’s expected.

The country announced that all covid-19 restrictions on flights will be dropped starting almost immediately, to allow airlines to ramp up service ahead of the welcome.

Vietnam has been mildly open with heavy red tape, but this move to reopen travel on three months ahead of schedule, rather than June 15th, would see virtually all covid-19 travel restrictions rolled back.

a group of people walking on a hill

Many countries, including most of Europe, are now dropping testing restrictions to add confidence for wary travelers worried about the implications of what might happen if you test abroad. The Asian countries which have reopened, including Singapore, Thailand and the Philippines

Given recent declines in hospitalizations and deaths, as the global pandemic becomes endemic, countries are moving to remove that burden or worry, by no longer requiring testing of any kind for the fully vaccinated.

Southeast Asia isn’t quite “there” yet, but it’s going from closed to open, and that’s an exciting change for 2022 as the world gets back to travel. It’s time to add Vietnam to your list of choices.

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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  1. Let’s talk about your definition of “Restriction Free Travel”. Here’s mine.

    1) No test before departing.
    2) No vaccine check.
    3) No masks on planes.
    4) No quarantine.

    According to your definition. “restriction-free” includes 1 through 4 above. You are only forgiven if English is not your first language.

    1. Given your sanctimony, if the goal is to eat pho without restrictions, you might want to check out San Jose, California.

  2. Fab. As soon as we have a green light, we are off…meant to be in HKT and DPS atm, vi a BA to HKG F 241, NOT, of course.. so here’s hoping…Vietnam will do just fine. Fancy Hoi An and Hanoi…love the street food eating, on little stools with the locals.. Bliss…

  3. Masks on planes it would appear will not be lifted soon!
    No country should be held accountable for plane mask wearing although I do concur with your comments on ‘Restriction Free’
    If substantial money has to be spent then is not ‘free’
    ie paying for PCR tests for me is minimum £80 per person!
    A further quarantine on arrival outwith the hotel I wish to book is a restriction!
    Vaccine proof I hope WILL BE needed but ALL countries have to decide an agreed period of validation from last vaccine 6, 9 or 12 months instead of the hotchpotch currently in place.
    BUT things are heading in right direction and slowly returning to a new norm…what ever that may be!

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