Travel restrictions covering more than 30 countries with reported cases of new COVID-19 variant extended until Jan 31, 2021
Foreign travelers from countries/jurisdictions covered by restrictions, or with travel history in these places within the last 14 days prior to arrival in the Philippines, will not be allowed entry until Jan 31
Filipino citizens from these countries/jurisdictions or who have been there within 14 days immediately preceding arrival will undergo a 14-day facility-based quarantine period
Travel restrictions covering more than 30 countries with reported cases of the new COVID-19 variant have been extended until January 31, 2021.
The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) in Resolution No. 94 dated January 14 approved the extension of the entry travel restrictions as well as the rules applicable to all travelers coming from or transiting through the following countries/jurisdictions:
- United Kingdom (UK)
- The Netherlands
- Hong Kong
- South Korea
- South Africa
- United States of America
Under the rules, all foreign travelers coming from the countries/jurisdictions covered by the travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 variant, or with travel history in these places within the last 14 days prior to arrival in the Philippines, will not be permitted entry until January 31, 2021.
Filipino citizens coming from countries/jurisdictions where travel restrictions are in place, or who have been to the same within 14 days immediately preceding arrival in the Philippines, will undergo strict observation of absolute 14-day facility-based quarantine period. Exceptions are only for highly exceptional and/or medical reasons as determined by the Department of Health.
Since current knowledge is limited on the effect of available vaccines on the transmissibility of COVID-19, any individual arriving in the Philippines who may have received vaccination for COVID-19 in other countries/jurisdictions will still be required to observe mandatory testing and quarantine protocols.
The Philippines first started to impose flight suspensions to and from the UK last December 24 after reports of the emergence in the European country of a new variant of SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, last month.
The ban has since been expanded and now covers 33 countries as a preventive measure against the entry of the new, more infectious variant of COVID-19. Recently, DOH announced that a Filipino traveler who arrived from a business trip to the United Arab Emirates was positive for the new COVID-19 strain.
Aside from flight suspensions, the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) and Cebu Port Authority (CPA) are also temporarily prohibiting vessels coming from the covered countries from changing their crews at PPA- and CPA-designated crew change hubs.
IATF Resolution 94, meanwhile, also directed the Department of Transportation to strictly implement issuances against airlines that allow the boarding of passengers prohibited from entering the Philippines.
The IATF, in coordination with other agencies, may issue implementing guidelines on the exemptions to these entry restrictions.