TravelPhilippines restarts transit without visa facilities for low-risk travelers

14:40  31 august  2021
14:40  31 august  2021 Source:   pressfrom.com

The government of the Philippines has confirmed that it has restarted Transit without Visa (TWOV) facilities for passengers arriving from low-risk countries if they are transiting through Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL) in Manila, the country’s capital city. Travelers from these territories are also now permitted to enter the Philippines for non-transit purposes.

The new rules apply to travelers arriving from the following countries: Albania, American Samoa, Anguilla, Australia, Benin, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cayman Islands, Chad, China, Chinese Taipei, Comoros, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Grenada, Hong Kong, Hungary, Ivory Coast, Mali, Malvinas, Micronesia, Montserrat, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Niger, Nigeria, Northern Mariana Islands, Palau, Poland, Romania, Samoa, Slovakia, St. Pierre and Miquelon, or Sudan.

The easing of Philippines travel restrictions for transit signals that the country could be preparing to allow more foreign nationalities to enter the country without having to meet strict requirements for COVID-19 documentation. However, a number of restrictions remain in place.

At present, all visa on arrival facilities and visa exemptions remain suspended for the Philippines. It is currently necessary for all foreign travelers to obtain an approved visa in advance or have an approved eTA (electronic travel authorization) to travel to the Philippines. Passengers with a 9(A) visa for the Philippines must also have an endorsement document issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).

However, some exceptions apply. Passengers from many countries who are former nationals of the Philippines, as well as their accompanying spouses and children, are allowed to enter without having to meet these restrictions. As can passengers with an Identification Certificate (IC) or a Certificate of Re-acquisition/Retention of Philippine Citizenship (CRPC) issued by the Philippines.

Additionally, passengers with a COVID-19 vaccination certificate showing that they were fully vaccinated in the Philippines at least 14 days before arrival are also exempt from the entry restrictions, as are diplomatic passport holders.

Nevertheless, an entry ban for the Philippines remains in place for foreign travelers with a normal passport who have been in several high-risk countries within the previous 14 days. The list currently includes Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and United Arab Emirates.

Only Filipino nationals, diplomatic passport holders, and those with a valid 9(E) visa are currently permitted to arrive from these high-risk territories, and they are required to have a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result issued at most 48 hours before departure to do so.

Additionally, they must have approval from the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ) in order to obtain an exemption from quarantine in a facility on arrival. Instead, they must quarantine at home for up to 14 days. Those with a diplomatic passport or 9E visa arriving from non-low risk countries are also required to self-isolate at home for 10 days unless they have a vaccination certificate stating they are fully vaccinated.

All other passengers arriving in the Philippines are currently required to quarantine for at least 10 days at their first point of entry at a hotel approved by the Filipino Tourism and Health Agencies. They must have a confirmed reservation booked in advance of departure to do so.

Exceptions apply to nationals of the Philippines who are Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW), and fully vaccinated passengers arriving from low-risk countries who have received either the AstraZeneca, Covishield, Janssen, Moderna, Pfizer-BioNTech Sinopharm, or Sinovac vaccines. Nevertheless, they are still subject to quarantine for 7 days.

Additionally, passengers traveling to Davao (DVO) must have a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR test result issued at most 72 hours before departure. This is a mandatory requirement regardless of whether the traveler has been vaccinated or not.

It is also necessary for all passengers to download the 'TRAZE' tracing app on their personal device before departure and complete a "Case Investigation Form" to present on arrival at border control in the Philippines, regardless of their point of entry. Passengers traveling to Cebu (CEB) must also complete an online registration no later than 5 days before their departure.

Travelers planning to visit the Philippines are advised to follow health guidelines within the country to limit the spread of COVID-19 during their stay. Nevertheless, the strict lockdown previously in place in Manila has now been lifted in a bid to restart economic activity and many businesses in the capital have now resumed operations.

However, strict enforcement of COVID rules such as the need to wear masks in public spaces remains in place. As the number of positive COVID-19 cases in the country continues to climb, the Philippine Health Ministry has also urged the population to identify infections sooner and get vaccinated to boost protection.

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usr: 2
This is interesting!