DOT: Covid test still required to enter some tourist destinations

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Some of the country’s tourist destinations that have reopened still impose a test-before-travel policy, Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat clarified Wednesday.

Among these are Boracay, Bohol, Ilocos Sur, El Nido, Coron, Puerto Princesa, and San Vicente in Palawan, which will open on March 15.

Romulo-Puyat said some Luzon destinations opening up this month would also require a negative test result, such as Pangasinan and La Union.

“Siargao requires also, Siquijor will require, Dumaguete, Negros Oriental will also require; Iloilo also requires. Actually, halos lahat they require test before travel (nearly all destinations require test before travel). Even Cebu City requires,” she said.

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) through Resolution No. 101, removed the mandatory testing except when the local government unit requires it before travel.

“The latest IATF resolution merely simplified everything na ang test before travel is kung hihingin ng local government unit (that the test before will only be required if the LGU asks for it). But if the LGU won’t, then there won’t be a test before travel,” she explained.

Romulo-Puyat said entry guidelines used to include submission of various clearances and, in some places, quarantine despite negative results.

“Ang tinanggal lang ‘yong quarantine na 14 days (What was removed was the required 14-day quarantine) except when, of course, you enter the tourist destination and you have Covid symptoms,” she said.

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