No cross border travel till March 2022?

September 01, 2021 11:05
Photo: Sohu

Hong Kong is lucky to be virtually Covid-free in the last two months, yet Hong Kong people are unlucky because they are restricted in their travel and social gatherings.

That is different from most parts of the world, where delta variant dominates but people can gradually travel and gather freely.

That is why Hong Kong people are not happy: they are stuck in the city and most of them could not enjoy the night life like before.

Sixty per cent of the city’s eligible population has been vaccinated ( with at least one vaccine dose). However less than 30 percent of people over 70 has been inoculated.

Still high vaccination rate does not guarantee easing of travel curbs.
Many, myself included, would have hoped the border would be open to other countries, or at least to Shenzhen or Zhuhai in summer but now it looks like it would be further delayed.

Local media suggested Beijing would prefer to open borders with Hong Kong in March next year because it wanted to keep the Covid situation under control before the Winter Olympics Game in February.

In other words, the border will be closed for at least another six months.

That is to say people who fancy cheap getaway in the Greater Bay Area would have to wait a bit longer, so will the mainlanders who want to come down to buy life insurance.

Of course, one can still get the above things done through a two-week , if not a three-week quarantine but who doesn’t want to go straight home after a trip?

To the citizens’ disappointment, Chief Executive Carrie Lam Cheung Yuet-ngor said there is no timetable for the border opening between Hong Kong and China, though stressing that Beijing acknowledges Hong Kong’s request for quarantine-free travel.

Separately, the air bubble travel arrangement between Hong Kong and Singapore was suspended with Singapore now reopening progressively to other countries.

Hong Kong, on the other hand, suspended the travel relaxation of western countries and requested visitors, including HSBC chairman Mark Tucker, to have a three-week quarantine arrangement previously.

Of course there is a need for Tucker to visit Asia, which contributes the bulk of the bank’s profit, but he cannot be exempted.

Ironically, people leaving Hong Kong for Britain are lucky to find that they would not need to quarantine.

Anyway,it seems a faraway dream to travel for leisure without quarantine for the time being. That is another reason why our high-end restaurants are always full on weekends – we all need a little excuse to spend some money because we are simply bored.

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EJ Insight writer