Boracay Island now opened for tourists from all over the country starting this October 1, the Department of Tourism (DOT) announced Wednesday.
“Boracay Island will further open its doors to more local tourists on October 1, and signals the continued resurgence of domestic tourism nationwide,” DOT said in a statement.
“This development came as a result of a special meeting convened by the principals of the Boracay Interagency Task Force (BIATF) led by its Chairperson Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu and Co-Vice Chairpersons Interior and Local Government Secretary Ed Ano and Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat with Province of Aklan Governor Joeben Miraflores on 22 September,” the tourism department added.
Last June 16, Boracay Island reopened but only for visitors from Western Visayas.
Meanwhile, the Department of Tourism also said it is currently checking the preparedness of tourist destinations for reopening amid the pandemic.
Undersecretary Benito Bengzon Jr. said in an interview on GMA Network’s Unang Hirit, that DOT is pursuing a gradual resumption of the tourism industry in the country.
“Unti-unti nating binubuksan ang ating tourist destinations. Ang instruction ni Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat is to make a slow but sure reopening of tourism activities,” he said.
(We are gradually opening our tourist destinations. Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat’s instruction is to make a slow but sure reopening of tourism activities.)
Boracay opens for tourists nationwide starting Oct. 1
“Tinitingnan pa po natin ‘yung ibang destinations na maaaring magbukas kasi kailangan preparado, handa ang ating destinations bago magbukas,” he added.
(We are still looking at other destinations that can open because we need to be prepared. Our destinations are ready before opening.)
Aside from Boracay, Tagaytay and Baguio City also reopened for tourists but nearby provinces only.
Tourist destinations under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) may resume operation provided they comply with the regulations set by the DOT, Bengzon said.
Local governments should also first approve the resumption of tourism activities.
Bengzon added DOT developed a platform called Visitor Information and Travel Assistance that would monitor the movement of tourists and if tourism destinations are following health protocols and
“The good thing about it, disiplinado’yung mga turista natin. I think, this is a good start,” Bengzon said.