All international and domestic passengers are required to wear face shields aside from face masks starting Saturday, Aug. 15.
The Department of Transportation (DOTr) had earlier issued a directive addressed to all public transportation, including the aviation, railway, road, and maritime sectors, mandating face shields in public transportation, after the National Capital Region and nearby provinces were placed under Modified Enhanced Community Quarantine (MECQ).
The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) said that international and local carriers in every international and domestic airport in the country will implement the directive of the DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade seeking to reduce the transmission of COVID-19 infection in all public transport facilities.
CAAP spokesman Eric Apolonio said that airlines officials in every airport will require all passengers to wear face masks upon arrival at the airport and wear the face shields prior boarding the aircraft. “Dapat nakasuot na ang face shield pag pasok ng aerobridges.”
Aside from wearing masks and face shields, passengers are also required to bring their negative COVID-19 results or certification and present to airline staff at the counters, Apolonio added.
Health authorities pointed out that the use of face shields and masks reduces exposure to and emission of respiratory droplets considerably.
“Let us not think of this requirement of using face shield as an additional cost or inconvenience,” Tugade said. “Let us remember that no amount of protection is too much when it comes to health and safety, especially that we are battling an invisible enemy.”
Meanwhile, Philippine Airlines (PAL), Cebu Pacific (CEB), and Air Asia have cancelled their domestic flights from Manila to other domestic destinations while some international destinations continue but with restrictions.
The local carriers continue to implement enhanced bio-security preventive measures to keep their passengers and personnel safe.
These safety measures include daily extensive cleaning and disinfection protocols for all aircraft and facilities, rapid antibody testing for all frontliners and crew, and contactless flight procedures.
These are based on global best practices and adhere to the highest safety standards.