Ilocos Sur reopens to Luzon tourists
Catherine Talavera (The Philippine Star) - November 22, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Ilocos Sur has been added to the list of tourist destinations that is now open to visitors from Luzon.

“We are making another big leap forward with the reopening of Ilocos Sur to tourists from the rest of Luzon,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said during the launch of the expanded travel corridor on Friday.

“Staying true to our strategy of slowly but surely reopening our destinations, we have taken careful steps to ensure that the public’s health and safety continues to be the priority in this great undertaking,” Puyat said.

Ilocos Sur first welcomed back tourists from Ilocos region and Baguio City with the launch of the ridge and reef corridor last month.

Puyat expressed support for the strengthening of Ilocos Sur’s capacity building programs for both local government units and tourism stakeholders and redefining the province’s old and new tourism products.

The Ilocos Sur provincial government issued an executive order on health and safety guidelines with the opening of Ilocos Sur to more tourists.

“We look forward to working closely with Gov. Ryan Singson and the provincial government in further developing tourism, recalibrating their product portfolio and building the capability of our stakeholders and frontliners as well,” Puyat said.

A maximum of 50 visitors per day will be allowed to ensure effective crowd control aside from the strict implementation of minimum health protocols.

Tourists will be required to present several documents upon arrival at the border of Tagudin and Sinait towns, such as a negative swab test result within 48 hours prior to their travel, a digital or printed SafePass QR code, a confirmed itinerary from a DOT-accredited tour and travel agency, a DOT-accredited accommodation and transport booking as well as a government-issued ID.

Visitors will be required to take an antigen test upon arrival. Those who intend to stay for more than three days must take another antigen test on their fourth day, which is valid for another three-day stay.

The DOT said 18 tourist sites in Ilocos Sur are now open. Ten diving spots will also be opened to the public.

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