Philippines temporarily bars foreign travelers from 4 countries

Philippines temporarily bars foreign travelers from 4 countries
Airline ground staff (L) wearing protective gear work at the counter at the airport in Manila on August 4, 2020.
AFP / Ted Aljibe

MANILA, Philippines — The government’s pandemic task force is barring the entry of foreign travelers from Grenada, Papua New Guinea, Serbia and Slovenia from September 19 to September 30 as it places these countries on the Red List.

Areas on the Red List are considered by the task force to be “high risk” for COVID-19. Foreign travelers coming from or who have been to these areas, regardless of their vaccination status, cannot enter the Philippines.

However, foreign passengers who only transited through an area in the Red List can be allowed entry to the country subject to entry, testing and quarantine protocols, provided that they only stayed in the airport the whole time and were not cleared for entry by the red-listed area’s immigration authorities.

Filipinos returning home from Red List areas via repatriation and Bayanihan flights may be allowed back, subject to entry, testing and quarantine protocols.

These protocols include undergoing a 14-day quarantine, the first 10 days of which are spent in a quarantine facility and the remaining four days spent under home quarantine at their local government of destination.

On the seventh day of quarantine, they will be swabbed to test for COVID-19. Regardless of results, they will still complete the full quarantine period.

Meanwhile, the pandemic task force placed the following areas on the Green List, or territories which are at low risk for COVID-19.

  • American Samoa
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cameroon
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chad
  • China
  • Comoros
  • Republic of the Congo
  • Djibouti
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Falkland Islands (Malvinas)
  • Gabon
  • Hong Kong (Special Administrative Region of China)
  • Hungary
  • Madagascar
  • Mali
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Montserrat
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Niger
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Palau
  • Poland
  • Saba (Special Municipality of the Kingdom of Netherlands
  • Saint Pierre and Miquelon
  • Sierra Leone
  • Sint Eustatius
  • Taiwan
  • Algeria
  • Bhutan
  • Cook Islands
  • Eritrea
  • Kiribati
  • Marshall Islands
  • Nauru
  • Nicaragua
  • Niue
  • North Korea
  • Saint Helena
  • Samoa
  • Solomon Islands
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Tajikstan
  • Tanzania
  • Tokelau
  • Tonga
  • Turkmenistan
  • Tuvalu
  • Vanuatu
  • Yemen

Inbound travelers from "green" territories who are fully vaccinated only need to go through a seven-day quarantine and a RT-PCR test in a government-accredited facility on their fifth day, with their day of arrival already counted as the first day.

All other territories not mentioned are placed by the pandemic task force on the Yellow List, or areas where there is moderate risk for COVID-19.

All inbound travelers from areas on the Yellow List, regardless of their vaccination status, must quarantine for 14 days, with the first 10 days spent in a quarantine facility and the remaining four days spent under home quarantine at their local government of destination.

They will also be required to get tested for COVID-19 on the seventh day of quarantine. Regardless of their results, they must complete the full quarantine period. — Xave Gregorio

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: October 23, 2021 - 11:53am

Find the latest travel and tourism news from around the world amid the coronavirus pandemic. Main image by AFP/Romeo Gacad

October 23, 2021 - 11:53am

Vietnam plans to reopen the resort island of Phu Quoc to vaccinated foreign visitors in late November, authorities said, as the country looks to reboot its tourism industry after almost two years of closure.

Phu Quoc, which lies around 10 kilometres (six miles) off Cambodia in the Gulf of Thailand, boasts white-sand beaches and crystal clear waters, as well as mountains and thick jungle.

It attracted around 670,000 visitors and earned more than $18 billion dollars from international arrivals in 2019, with authorities hoping to turn it into a tourist mecca in the style of Thailand's Phuket or Indonesia's Bali. 

From November 20, "charter flights" for international travellers with vaccine passports will be welcomed to the island, the government said late Friday.

After that, between late December and the end of March, the island aims to receive up to 5,000 foreign arrivals on similar charter flights.

Tourists will need to show vaccine certificates together with a negative Covid-19 test result before being allowed in. — AFP

October 19, 2021 - 3:11pm

Singapore on Tuesday begins quarantine-free entry for fully vaccinated passengers from eight countries, part of a plan to ease restrictions as the business hub gears up to live with the coronavirus.

Singapore Airlines says flights from Amsterdam, London, Los Angeles and New York were scheduled to arrive Tuesday under the programme.

"We have seen very strong demand for our Vaccinated Travel Lane flights," the national airline tells AFP. — AFP

October 18, 2021 - 3:47pm

Fully vaccinated travellers from eight countries will be able to enter Singapore without quarantine from Tuesday, as the business hub eases restrictions and gears up to live with the coronavirus.

The city-state initially fought the pandemic by shutting borders, lockdowns of varying intensity and aggressive contact tracing but with more than 80 percent of the population fully vaccinated, authorities in the global aviation hub are keen to revive the economy.

They opened travel lanes for vaccinated passengers from Brunei and Germany in September, and will expand the scheme from Tuesday to another eight countries — Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States.

The lane with South Korea will start November 15.

Under the policy, passengers will not have to quarantine if they have been fully vaccinated and tested negative for the coronavirus before they depart and on arrival. — AFP

October 16, 2021 - 10:19am

The United States will reopen its land and air borders on November 8 to foreign visitors fully vaccinated against COVID-19, ending a more than 18-month ban on travel from much of the globe that separated families, hobbled tourism and strained diplomatic ties.

The decision to ease restrictions was "guided by public health, stringent and consistent," said White House assistant press secretary Kevin Munoz in a tweet on Friday announcing the new policy.

He said the "announcement and date applies to both international air travel and land travel." — AFP

October 15, 2021 - 10:43am

Sydney is scrapping mandatory quarantine for overseas travellers from next month, officials said Friday, signalling a faster-than-expected end to tough coronavirus restrictions.

New South Wales Premier Dominic Perrottet said that, from November 1, fully vaccinated travellers to the state will have to test negative before getting on the plane, but would not have to quarantine at all on arrival.

"For double vaccinated people around the world, Sydney, New South Wales, is open for business," he said. "Hotel quarantine will be a thing of the past. This is a significant day for our state." — AFP

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