DOTr, CAAP set up one-stop shop for returning OFWs, international travelers in Bohol int'l airport

Published November 18, 2021, 12:44 PM

by Alexandria Dennise San Juan

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) and the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) have launched a one-stop shop hub in Bohol-Panglao International Airport to assist returning overseas Filipino workers and arriving international travelers.

(FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN) Overseas Filipinos sent home almost $18 billion of cash remittances as of end-July

The DOTr and CAAP, with various agencies and representatives of the Bohol provincial government office led the pilot implementation of the one-stop-shop center on Wednesday, Nov. 17.

According to the DOTr, the arrival of some 120 passengers from Bangkok via Philippine Airlines (PAL) flight PR 731 has been processed through the OSS wherein all government frontline services are made accessible to returning OFWs.

“The government has repatriated a lot of OFWs displaced by the COVID-19 pandemic since last year. There are more of them expected to return which is why DOTr and CAAP aim to prioritize not only their safety and security in our airports but more importantly, their convenience in our terminals,” CAAP Director General Jim Sydiongco said.

The Bohol-Panglao International Airport follows the Laoag International Airport for implementing a one-stop shop for returning OFWs.

The one-stop-shop initiative was mandated by DOTr Secretary Arthur P. Tugade as he stressed the need to ease the burden of returning OFWs amid limited international arrival capacities at the other gateways such as Ninoy Aquino International Airport, and in Mactan and Clark.

Meanwhile, Sydiongco noted an expected increase in the number of international and domestic travel amid eased movement restrictions in almost the entire country.

Passengers were guided on the use of digitized health declaration and contact tracing processes at the airport. OFWs were referred to the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), while non-OFWs to the Department of Tourism (DOT) to arrange their swab testing and accommodation.