SINGAPORE: Visitors will get to enter Sentosa for free from Mar 14 until the end of June, as part of the resort island’s new supportive measures for its businesses amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

This is an extension of an earlier plan to waive admission fees for all visitors during the March school holidays, Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) said on Wednesday (Mar 11).

Apart from allowing those driving into Sentosa or taking the monorail service at VivoCity to enter for free, SDC will also be waiving the transport fee for its shuttle bus at Our Tampines Hub from Mar 14 to Jun 30. 

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SDC on Wednesday also announced rental deferments for businesses operating on the resort island, after noting feedback on business sentiment.

It said it will defer 50 per cent of rental payments for business operators for the next three months “where applicable”.

The deferred rental may be paid in interest-free installments over a 12-month period, SDC added in a media release.

At the moment, businesses on Sentosa already benefit from rental waivers, property tax rebates and access to a temporary bridging loan under the S$4 billion Stabilisation and Support Package announced in Budget 2020.

“Following feedback from island partners on business sentiments, SDC will also be introducing rental deferments to enhance support,” its media release said.

SDC said Sentosa has seen a 20 per cent to 50 per cent drop in visitor numbers and sales since early February. 

“Both the island admission waiver and rental deferment take into account requests and inputs shared by island partners,” SDC added.

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It is also stepping up on promotional efforts with a new Stay and Play Programme, which will feature an array of promotions and deals such as hotel and attraction packages for the month of March.

To safeguard the health and well-being of visitors, SDC and businesses on the island have stepped up cleaning efforts.

“Enhanced cleaning efforts, such as increasing the frequency of on-island cleaning for various touch points on the island, will also provide greater assurance to the public as they go about their activities,” SDC said.

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