This travel advisory brought about by the new COVID-19 variant was last updated on 27 Jan 2021.
In case you missed it, a new COVID-19 variant has been detected and already affecting a number of countries globally. Because of this, the Philippines has initially suspended entry of select international travellers effective 30 Dec 2020.
Originally scheduled to end on 15 Jan 2021, the temporary travel ban has been extended to 31 Jan 2021 and covers countries with reported cases of the new variant, VUI 202012/01. Among the already banned places is the United Kingdom (UK), where the first case of the said COVID-19 variant was primarily detected.
Which countries and travellers are banned due to the new COVID-19 variant?
Aside from travellers from the UK, those travelling from and transiting through the following countries are prohibited from entering the Philippines during the same period:
- The Netherlands
- Hong Kong
- South Korea
- South Africa
- United States
- United Arab Emirates
- Czech Republic
As of writing, there are travellers exempted from the new regulation brought about by the new COVID-19 variant. These include Filipino citizens returning to the Philippines from abroad and their families, travellers who are already in transit, and those who will arrive before the ban’s effectivity period.
These special cases may enter the country provided that they undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine upon arrival, regardless if they have a negative RT-PCR test result prior to their journey. Also excluded from the travel ban are accredited foreign officials, their dependents, and those travelling for medical and emergency purposes.
Meanwhile, outbound travel to unlisted countries affected by the new COVID-19 variant remains subject to existing international travel protocols of both the Philippines and the destination countries or territories.