The Philippines is not open to tourism and only allows national citizens to enter

The Philippines is not open to tourism and has recently become more restricted to all foreign visitors and even returning Filipinos.

The handful of allowed visitors must pass a negative COVID-19 test and will be subject to an additional COVID-19 RT-PCR test at the airport.

Visitors also need to book a room at a government-approved hotel or quarantine facility, where they will have to do an additional test on the sixth day from the date of arrival.

At the moment, the Philippines’ borders remain closed to tourism and the country is under curfew and banning interstate travel.

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Disclaimer: Travel restrictions and government regulations can change quickly and the information below may be out of date within hours. Therefore, check all information with your embassy or on official websites. Traveling Lifestyle is not responsible for your decision to travel.

Philippine reopening – LATEST UPDATES

Philippines Reopening

April 16 – The President of the Philippines takes control of private facilities by force due to the emergence of a pandemic.

The Presidential Communications Operations Office announced today that President Rodrigo Duterte will “invoke police power” to take control of private hotels and health facilities, as the country’s health system is about to collapse.

“We are in a critical condition, there is no space for doctors and nurses to travel and stay healthy, so we have come to exercise the state’s police power. When we are pushed against the wall, whether by the microbe itself or by external, internal, I can always order the military and police to go there and confiscate the operation of the hotels ”, said President Duterte on national television yesterday.

Duterte also mentioned that this is the least favorite option and can be harmful in a democratic country like the Philippines. But given that the country is in the midst of international competition with many other developing countries to secure the few vaccines that rich countries have left, they may need to do so until they can guarantee massive vaccination implementation.

March 23

President Rodrigo Duterte said recently that he will soon reopen the country’s economy. “I have to reopen the economy. I gave a schedule of just a few weeks. The president also called for a quick vaccination because “the economy must be open in a short time”.

The Philippines plans to immunize 70 million of its 108 million people this year. However, the country faces a shortage of vaccines because the government took too long to negotiate with the large pharmaceutical industry.

March 11 Update

As of March 20, the Philippine government will ban the entry of all international tourists and even the return of Filipino citizens who cannot prove that they are part of the Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs)

This very strict restriction will apply from March 20, 2021 until April 19, 2021. In addition, the country will only allow 1,500 international passengers per day.

  • This is a list of people who will be exempt from the entry ban:
  • 9 (e) visa holders
  • Medical repatriation travelers and their companions endorsed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • Afflicted returning Filipinos abroad (ROFs) duly endorsed by the DFA-OUMWA;
  • Emergency, humanitarian and other cases approved by the National Task Force against COVID-19.

Update – February 19

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On February 19, the Philippine government decided to open its doors to long-term visa holders. Arrivals of foreigners will have to undergo health protocols established by the “Interinstitutional Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases”.

Vaccination implementation

The Philippines did not vaccinate a single citizen right now. President Rodrigo Duterte blames the rich countries that, according to him, “bought all the inputs”. Despite this, the country is preparing to receive its first batch of vaccines at the end of the month.

Update – January 15th

The Philippines extended the travel ban for another 2 weeks, until January 31st. Travelers from more than 30 territories and countries are not allowed to enter. (Source:

The Philippines initially opened to tourists on June 1, but…

While the government gave the provinces the green light to open up to tourism on June 1, 2020, provinces were reluctant to accept tourists due to Covid-19 fears. As the number of cases increased, the borders had to be closed again.

Travelers need to be aware of the current quarantine status of the area to which they are traveling.

Regardless of the region, all visitors and residents must abide by the rules of social distance, wash their hands frequently and wear masks.

Situation of COVID-19 in the Philippines

The CDC has classified the Philippines as a level 3 travel risk.

From April 16, the country reported 914,971 COVID-19 cases with 15,738 deaths.

Before the pandemic, the Philippines was one of Asia’s fastest growing economies. It is now in recession.

The effect of the virus on tourism is part of the problem. In 2019, more than 8 million tourists came to the Philippines, and the tourism industry accounted for 13% of the country’s GDP. Almost 1 in 7 Filipinos worked in the tourism sector.

Now, with the blockades, many of them are unemployed and with no end in sight. This motivated the government to try to open the country, but it has been a slow process.

Why visit the Philippines?

Beach in the philippines

The Philippines is a wonderful place for a tropical getaway. It is warm and, with more than 7,000 islands, it has miles of white sand beaches for visitors to relax.

The waters are crystal clear and offer opportunities for snorkelers, divers, kayaks and fishermen.

Some of these places, such as Boracay, Palawan and Siargao, are constantly considered the main beach destinations in the world.

There are also other natural wonders, such as the Puerto Princesa Underground River National Park.

It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is the largest navigable underground river in the world. Travelers can take a tour of a cave system filled with impressive formations.

Tourists can also enjoy unique cuisine, vibrant local festivals and some of the friendliest people in the world. As the locals generally speak English, visitors find it easy to communicate.

Filipinos are proud of their country and love to answer questions from visitors.

It is also a cheap travel destination. Travelers can take a day trip for around $ 20 and decent meals for under $ 5.

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