DOTr: Foreigners barred from entering PH starting midnight March 22

By: Consuelo Marquez - INQUIRER.net - Inquirer.net | March 20,2020 - 07:24 PM

MANILA, Philippines — Foreigners will not be allowed to enter the country starting midnight on Sunday (March 22) in a bid to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said Friday.

“There will be a temporary travel ban on foreigners entering the country starting 12:00 AM, 22 March 2020,” read the transportation department’s aviation protocols sent to reporters.

DOTr said Filipino migrant workers, repatriated Filipinos,  foreign spouses of Filipino and their children (provided that the foreign nationals are traveling with the Filipinos), foreign government officials and international organization officials accredited to the Philippines are excluded from the temporary travel ban.

This was after the Department of Foreign Affairs released a foreign circular that temporarily suspended the issuance of visas and visa-free privileges worldwide to ban foreigners from entering the country for the duration of the enhanced community quarantine which is being enforced in Luzon until April 12.

The aviation protocol also noted that overseas Filipino workers, balikbayans and foreigners will be allowed to leave the country through any port in Luzon but should show proof of their international travel itinerary.

Filipino tourists are still not allowed to leave the country and are encouraged to stay inside their homes to help stop the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the DOTr said.

The DOTr also allowed land, air and sea travel of uniformed personnel on official business, especially those transporting medical supplies, laboratory specimens related to the COVID-19, and other humanitarian assistance.

DOTr again reminded that only one companion is allowed to bring a passenger to the airport to observe strict social distancing. The companion is also required to carry a copy of airline ticket of the passenger.

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TAGS: COVID-19, novel coronavirus, Philippines

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