BI says foreign arrivals to increase after gov't issues exemptions for travelers with COVID-19 boosters
Foreign arrivals are expected to increase as the government provided exemptions for travelers with COVID-19 booster shots from having negative pre-departure test results, the Bureau of Immigration said on Saturday.
During the "Laging Handa" public briefing, Immigration spokesperson Dana Sandoval said international arrivals had plateaued after the summer season ended but it is expected to increase after the exemption under the IATF Resolution number 168 will be implemented starting May 30.
"We see that one of the highest recorded, historically, is summer season arrivals apart from Christmas. But based on our observation in the past weeks, the number of arrivals have already plateaued at the average of 15,000 arrivals," she said.
"It is because the summer season has ended, but we think this latest development, the loosening up of travel restrictions for the arriving fforeign nationals, will help encourage the tourists and our citizens abroad to visit the country," she added.
Sandoval noted that although international arrivals have increased from 4,000 to 5,000 to 15,000 per day, it is still far from the pre pandemic level where an average of 45,000 arrivals per day were recorded in 2019.
"We remain hopeful because even if the figures have not reached the pre-pandemic numbers, we see that the number of tourists are increasing while we continue to loosen up the travel restrictions since February," she said.
"When we started the daily arrivals was just around 4 to 5 thousand per day, now it has increased to 15,000 per day, a little bit far from the pre-pandemic figures, but we’re getting there," she added. Robina Asido/DMS