Arrival protocols to PH revised, Red List expanded

Published November 29, 2021, 11:45 AM

by Emmie V. Abadilla


Philippine health authorities revised entry protocols and expanded the list of “Red” countries to curb COVID-19 and its variants, effective Nov. 28, 2021.

Eligible travelers to the Philippines from “Green” list countries will now be subjected to the same quarantine and testing protocols that apply to arrivals from countries in the “Yellow” list.

“Except for countries classified as “Red,” the testing and quarantine protocols for all inbound international travelers in all ports of entry shall comply with the testing and quarantine protocols for “Yellow” list countries,” the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) announced.

Travelers from Hong Kong shall follow protocols for ‘Yellow’ countries.

Fully vaccinated Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs) and eligible foreigners arriving from countries in the green and yellow lists with negative RT-PCR tests taken within 72 hours prior departure are required to have facility-based quarantine until the release of their negative results.

They should also undergo swabbing on the third day as well as self-monitoring until the 14th day of their arrival.

Those without a negative RT-PCR test should have facility-based quarantine until the release of their negative results, 5th day swabbing as well as home quarantine until the 10th day from arrival.

Travelers who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated or whose vaccination status cannot be independently validated are required to have facility-based quarantine until the release of their negative results, 7th day swabbing and home quarantine until the 14th day from arrival.

The revised Red List now includes South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Eswatini and Mozambique, Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium and Italy.

Inbound international travel shall not be allowed for all persons, regardless of vaccination status, coming from or who have been to Red List countries within the last 14 days prior to arrival to any port of the Philippines.

Only Filipinos returning to the country via government-initiated or non-government-initiated repatriation and Bayanihan Flights may be allowed entry subject to the prevailing entry, testing, and quarantine protocols for Red List countries — facility-based quarantine for 14 days with testing on the 7th day, with day 1 being the date of arrival, notwithstanding a negative RT-PCR result.

In addition, the IATF has suspended the entry of fully vaccinated foreign tourists of non-visa required countries from Green List countries.

Philippine Airlines (PAL) operates flights to Green list countries such as Indonesia, Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.