Thursday, August 6, 2020
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Philippines to Start Allowing Entry of Long-Term PH Visa Holders

Foreign nationals will have to take the RT-PCR test upon entry to the country.

Since the beginning of the community quarantine in the country, the Philippines has been denying the entry of any incoming flight to hopefully contain the spread of COVID-19. Airlines have also canceled hundreds of flights to protect both their passengers and crew from infection and to also comply with the guidelines set by the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF).

Filipinos with non-essential travels to and from the Philippines have also been disallowed by the task force and airlines had to make adjustments so passengers could rebook their affected flights for free. But over the past few weeks, airlines have been slowly resuming limited operations to select destinations for essential travels. And now, the Malacañang has announced that starting August, all foreigners with long-term Philippines visas will be allowed to enter the country once again. (Read: Travel Guidelines: 3 Things You Need to Know)

Conditions for Re-entry

There are, however, certain conditions for the re-entry of foreign nationals, according to Malacañang spokesperson Harry Roque. First is that all foreign nationals must have a valid and existing visa upon entry; no new entry visas will be accepted.

Second is they must take an RT-PCR test upon their arrival and stay in quarantine while waiting for the results. They will also have to pre-book an accredited quarantine facility and COVID-19 testing provider before their arrival.

Arriving passengers (in seats) fill out forms as quarantine officials watch at Narita airport. Travelers from Europe, Egypt, and Iran are required to self-quarantine for 14 days after arrival. (Photo from Kyodo News)

Lastly, all returning foreign nationals must take note that airports have a maximum capacity for the time being and returning overseas Filipino workers (OFW) will be prioritized.

Ito naman po ay hindi mga ordinaryong mga dayuhan lamang. Ito’y mga dayuhan na kinokonsidera nila na ang kanilang tahanan ay nandito sa Pilipinas dahil sila ay mga permanent residents,” said Spokesperson Roque.

Just last week, non-essential travels like vacations have been allowed by the IATF to boost tourism. However, these travels are subject to conditions given the current situation.

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