The Department of Tourism (DOT) said Wednesday that they would allow local government units to decide whether they would require a COVID-19 test as a requirement for travelers entering their areas.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said DOT only recommends uniform requirements among travel destinations.
“Ang pabor kami is uniformity ng requirements. With regard to test before travel, we leave that actually to LGU (local government unit) kasi LGU ang nagdedesisyon (because they’re the ones that decide),” she told ABS-CBN’s Teleradyo.
(What we favor is uniformity of requirements.)
“You have to respect the protocols of the LGU kasi alam nila ang cases sa kanila (because they know their COVID-19 cases).”
Puyat added LGUs could also decide whether they would allow the use of saliva COVID-19 test.
The tourism department called on local governments to lessen travel requirements such as police clearance and health certificates, Puyat said.
“We really have to restart tourism pero malayo pa talaga. Malayo pa kasi maraming ayaw magbukas na tourist destination, or number 2, marami pa ring nangangamba magtravel,” she said.
LGUs to decide whether to require swab test as travel requirement – DOT
(We really have to restart tourism but recovering is still far. It’s still far because many tourist destinations have yet to open, many still fear travel.)
“Number 3, gusto nila magtravel pero sa dami-dami ng requirements parang ayaw na nila (they want to travel but the amount of requirements they have to accomplish overwhelm them).”
The Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) will meet Friday to discuss the uniformity of travel requirements, the DOT chief said.
The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) earlier said that it eyes the removal of COVID-19 testing as a requirement for travel.
Cebu province no longer requires domestic tourists to show a negative COVID-19 test, Governor Gwendolyn Garcia announced on Monday.
“We’ll make it simpler. No more RT-PCR tests. No more antigen test. No more rapid test,” Garcia, speaking in mixed English and Cebuano languages.
“We will make it easier for all tourists to come into the province of Cebu,” she added.