Lapu-Lapu to reopen to foreign tourists

Mitchelle Palaubsanon - The Philippine Star

CEBU, Philippines —  Foreign tourists who have been fully vaccinated and tested negative for COVID-19 within 72 hours prior to their arrival can visit Lapu-Lapu City in Cebu.

Mayor Junard Chan said the city is ”well-prepared” to accept foreign tourists again.

Chan cited Resolution 113 of the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases, which allows foreigners to enter the country provided they have a valid visa and pre-booked accommodation for at least seven nights in an accredited hotel or facility.

He said vaccinated foreigners, who have not undergone swab tests prior to their visit, would be tested upon arrival.

Chan said the reopening of the city to foreigners was approved during previous meetings with tourism officials and other stakeholders.

He had earlier asked Health Secretary Francisco Duque III to allow the entry of foreign tourists in the city to revive the local economy.

Chan stressed the need to strike a balance between the economy and the health and safety of the people.

He said the city could reopen to tourists as the number of COVID-19 cases continues to drop.

“Halos wala na tayong kaso,” Chan said referring to the single-digit cases in the past several weeks.

Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia expressed support for Chan’s decision.

“I am one with Mayor Ahong Chan because his tourism sector is severely affected,” Garcia said.

Several tourist spots in Cebu, including the Kawasan Falls in Badian town and resorts in Malapascua, Sumilon and Bantayan, are now open to tourists.

Cebu police director Col. Engelbert Soriano said policemen were deployed in the areas to ensure that minimum health protocols are observed. – Iris Hazel Mascardo/The Freeman



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