Philippines sets new rules for arriving foreign nationals starting Feb 1
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines’ Covid-19 task force has set several conditions on the entry of foreign nationals which will take effect starting February 1, Malacañang said Friday.
For one, arriving foreign nationals should have valid and existing visas at the time of entry, except for those qualified under the Balikbayan program, said Secretary Harry Roque, spokesperson of the president and the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF).
Under the Balikbayan program, former Filipino nationals and their family members are allowed to travel to the Philippines visa-free and stay for a period of up to one year.
“These foreign nationals should also have a pre-booked accommodation for at least seven nights in an accredited quarantine hotel or facility,” he said in a statement.
“They shall also be subject to Covid-19 testing at the quarantine hotel or facility on the sixth day from the date of their arrival,” he added.
Earlier, the IATF already lifted the travel restriction for foreign nationals who serve as personnel of accredited international organizations, along with spouses and minor children of Filipino citizens traveling with them.
Meanwhile, those who arrive for medical and emergency cases, including their medical escorts, are now subject to applicable testing and quarantine protocols as prescribed by the Department of Health.
The government has imposed travel curbs on foreigners from more than 30 countries until the end of January to keep the new coronavirus variants out. However, this is extendible upon the decision of President Rodrigo Duterte.
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