Covid-19 variants prompt DOT to back travel bans

Business

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has thrown its full support behind the more stringent travel and area entry protocols in the country on account of the reported new Covid-19 virus mutations.

DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said that while they favor the resumption of inbound travel to stimulate economic recovery, “we value above all else the health and safety of our people, and in this light, we ask for the understanding and cooperation of inbound travelers in adhering to the measures put in place to ensure the protection of both guests and local communities.”

The DOT has thus prepared Health and Safety Guidelines for the following tourism enterprises to ensure the safe stay of visitors and protection of workers and host communities: attractions, restaurants, accommodation establishments, tourist land transport, travel and tour operations, tour guides, island and beach destinations, dive establishments, staycation hotels, spa, as well as facilities for meetings, conventions and exhibitions.

“We put our full trust in our front-liners at the international ports of entry as well as in our local government units (LGU) to strictly carry out these measures at borders and triage points,” Romulo-Puyat said.

The DOT Secretary also called for close cooperation among tourism destination managers, enterprises and host communities in reinforcing the minimum health and safety standards in their respective areas, including the 14-day quarantine in hotels that serve as temporary quarantine facilities.

The Philippines has recently banned foreign travelers from countries where the new coronavirus strains have been detected.

These countries include the United Kingdom, Denmark, Ireland, Japan, Australia, HongKong, Israel, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, France, Iceland, Italy, Lebanon, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, South Korea, South Africa and Canada.

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