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Saigon to Resume Flights, Buses, Taxis, App-Based Car Rides in Limited Capacity

Buses, cars and private ride options will resume in limited capacity in Saigon this week.

On October 5, Saigon was among eight localities in Vietnam that agreed to resume domestic flights to some degree. Last week, the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) asked 20 provinces and cities with airports whether they were ready to accept flights again.

Dien Bien, Phu Yen, Khanh Hoa, Binh Dinh, Thanh Hoa and Dak Lak authorities were in complete agreement with the proposed flight schedule. Nghe An wanted to reopen only two round-trip flights a week to Hanoi and Saigon, citing limited quarantine capacity. Hai Phong and Gia Lai said no to reopening at the moment.

According to CAAV's reopening proposal, Saigon will operate 132 daily inbound flights to other provinces, including 20 to Khanh Hoa, seven to Phu Yen, 11 to Binh Dinh, and two to Dien Bien. The Hanoi to Saigon route has yet to be re-established, though Saigon expressed interest in its resumption. A specific flight schedule has not been determined at the time of writing.

Flights to Saigon from Hanoi have been suspended since the end of July. The cancellation of other routes followed, with the only flights operated for the past several months being those going to foreign destinations.

For taxis and ride-hailing services, car-based options are allowed to operate at reduced capacity this week. Specifically, 20% of taxis in a fleet can resume operation, while 10% of app-based cars, such as Grab and Be, can take to the roads again. Ride-hailing apps still can't operate motorbike services outside of delivery yet.

Tourism firms can put no more than 30% of their vehicles back in service. A limited number of bus routes have started running again; at the moment, there are only four such routes, all of which are in Can Gio District.

Saigon citizens sheltering in other provinces are being allowed to return to the city if they can provide documentation that they have residency here or have a medical emergency. Non-residents with proof of medical appointments in Saigon can also enter the city if they have tested negative for COVID-19 72 hours before the appointment.

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