Foreign tourists still barred from entering the Philippines

According to the Bureau of Immigration (BI), the Philippines remains closed to international tourists as of November 18. Photo: BI

MANILA — The Bureau of Immigration (BI) clarified on Thursday, November 18, 2021, that the Philippines is still closed to foreign tourists.

“The country remains closed to foreign tourists. Only those under the allowed categories as set by the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases), if coming from green or yellow countries may be admitted to enter,” according to Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente.

Morente emphasized that, while there are encouraging signs that the country's borders will be reopened soon, the BI will continue to restrict foreign tourist entry until the government decides to lift the travel ban. Only Filipinos, balikbayans, and foreigners with valid and existing visas issued by the BI and other specialized government agencies are currently permitted to enter the country.

Those wishing to visit the Philippines on a tourist visa must apply for a 9(a) temporary visitors' visa and an entry exemption document (EED) from a Philippine post abroad.

While the BI is ready and prepared for the eventual reopening of the country to foreign tourists, Morente stated that the decision to reopen will be made by the President and the IATF.

The statement was issued by the BI chief in response to reports that the bureau's offices were being inundated with inquiries from people who assumed that foreign tourists could now enter the country after Metro Manila was placed under the less stringent Alert Level 2 status.

“We advise the public to refer to our website and social media pages to keep themselves updated on our latest advisories on guidelines and requirements for international travelers,” he said.

The Palace previously stated that the Philippines will resume welcoming foreign tourists "in due time," citing the experience of other countries that have already opened their borders to foreign visitors. —Tacloban News Update (Source: BI/PRESS RELEASE)
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