5 more countries lift inbound travel restrictions on Filipinos amid COVID-19 pandemic — DFA

Marje Pelayo   •   August 24, 2020   •   1451

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) on Sunday (August 23) announced five more countries that have lifted inbound restrictions on Filipino travelers.

These countries include Brazil, Kiribati, the United Kingdom, Benin, and Chad. 

The lifting of restrictions is subject to medical protocols such as proof of purchase of health insurance, institutional or home quarantine, presentation of negative COVID-19 test results, among others. 

However, the DFA added that even though Canada, Armenia, Slovak Republic, and Kuwait still do not allow general entry, these countries have imposed stricter medical protocols for those who are exempted from the entry restrictions.

Chad, meanwhile, has opened its outbound borders, subject to flight availability and other special arrangements. 

Previous information on travel restrictions for other countries and regions remain the same. 

In view of these updates, the DFA reminds the public that information contained in the infographics is subject to change without prior and sufficient public notice. 

Therefore, it is always best to check ahead of travel dates with airlines, as well as with relevant embassies or consulates before booking a ticket and before departure.

Only foreigners with valid visas allowed entry to PH, tourists still banned — BI

Robie de Guzman   •   May 3, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — Only foreign nationals with valid and existing visas will be allowed to enter the Philippines, and tourists are still prohibited despite the lifting of certain travel restrictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) said.

The BI issued the clarification after the Philippine government lifted the travel ban on some foreign nationals starting May 1.

“Foreign tourists are still prohibited from entering the country and said restriction remains effective until it is lifted by the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-MEID) ” Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente said in a statement on Sunday.

Morente explained that the country only reverted to implementing the travel international guidelines that existed prior to March 22 when the government re-imposed a ban on the entry of all foreigners due to a recent spike in COVID-19 cases in the country.

“The recent easing of travel restrictions applies only to those aliens who were allowed to come here before March 22 and they should have valid and existing visas at the time of their arrival in our ports of entry,” the BI chief added.

The BI earlier announced that starting May 1, foreigners with existing immigrant and non-immigrant visas may again enter the country.

Exempted from the visa requirement are the foreign spouse and children of Balikbayans or returning Filipinos and former Filipinos who are traveling with the latter.

Foreigners who are holders of valid and existing Special Resident and Retirees Visa (SRRV) or Section 9(a) temporary visitors’ visas may be allowed entry, provided they present an entry exemption document from the Department of Foreign Affairs upon arrival.

Except for foreign diplomats and members of international organizations, all foreign travelers are required to present a pre-booked accommodation for at least seven nights in an accredited quarantine hotel facility where they will be tested for COVID-19 on the sixth day from the date of their arrival, the BI said.

The BI also emphasized that following the IATF-MEID, travelers who came from India or have a travel history to India within the last 14 days preceding their arrival are not allowed to enter the country until May 14.

PH to allow entry of more foreigners starting May 1 — Palace

Robie de Guzman   •   April 30, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines, on May 1,  will lift its ban on the entry of some foreign nationals except for those coming from India or those with travel history to the said country, Malacañang said Friday.

Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) has allowed the entry of foreign nationals permitted under previous IATF resolutions but will be subject to the following conditions:

  • They must have a valid and existing visa at the time of entry, except for those qualified under Balikbayan Program
  • They must have pre-booked accommodation for at least seven nights in an accredited quarantine hotel or facility
  • They must subject to COVID-19 testing at the quarantine hotel/facility on the sixth (6th) day from the date of arrival
  • They are subject to the maximum capacity of inbound passengers at the port and the date of entry

“Simula a-uno po ng Mayo, puwede pong makapasok at pinapayagang pumasok base sa mga nakaraang IATF resolution ang ilang mga dayuhan… Pero karamihan po ito ay iyong mga nangangalakal, iyong mga investors, visa holders at long-term visa holders,” Roque said during a Laging Handa briefing.

The entry ban on most foreigners was imposed on March 22 until April 30 due to rising COVID-19 cases in the Philippines.

Under previous IATF resolutions, the following foreign nationals allowed entry to the Philippines:

  • Diplomats
  • Members of international organization and their dependents holding valid 9(e) visa of 47(a)(2), as the case may be, at the time of entry
  • Foreigners involved in medical repatriation endorsed by the DFA Office of the Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs and Overseas Workers Welfare Administration provided that they have a valid visa at the time of entry
  • Foreign seafarers under the “green lanes” program for a crew change, provided that they hold a 9(c) crew list visa at the time of entry
  • Foreign spouses and children of Filipino citizens traveling with them, provided that they have valid visas at the time of entry
  • Emergency, humanitarian, and other analogous cases approved by the NTF vs COVID-19 chairperson or his duly authorized representative, provided that they have valid visas at the time of entry

“Travel restrictions, however, shall continue to be in effect for those coming from India or those with travel history to India, as imposed by IATF Resolution No. 112,” Roque said in a separate statement.

The Philippines has barred the entry of travelers from India from April 29 to May 14 due to the surge of COVID-19 infections attributed to a “double-mutant” coronavirus variant.

“All these are without prejudice to immigration rules and regulations. The Commissioner of Immigration shall have the exclusive prerogative to decide on the waiver or recall of exclusion orders of foreign nationals, subject to regular reporting to the IATF Secretariat,” Roque said.

The Bureau of Immigration has also been directed to formulate the necessary guidelines to ensure its smooth implementation, the Palace said. – RRD (with details from Correspondent Rosalie Coz)

PH records 12,225 new COVID-19 cases with 401 fatalities

Robie de Guzman   •   April 9, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines on Friday recorded 12,225 additional coronavirus disease (COVID-19), bringing the total number of infections to 849,554, the Department of Health (DOH) said.

In its latest bulletin, the DOH said the latest tally pushed the country’s total active cases to 178,351.

The agency, however, noted that the tally does not include data from ten laboratories that failed to submit their reports on time.

Ngayong 4 PM, Abril 9, 2021, ang Department of Health ay nakapagtala ng 12,225 na karagdagang kaso ng COVID-19….

Posted by Department of Health (Philippines) on Friday, April 9, 2021

The DOH also posted a record-high 401 new fatalities, bringing the country’s death toll to 14,520.

The Philippines’ previous highest number of coronavirus-related deaths was at 382 on April 6.

The number of recoveries also climbed to 647,683 after 946 more patients recovered from the viral respiratory disease.

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