The mayor of Malay town in Aklan province where Boracay Island is located said all tourists have to pay a P100 travel insurance each prior to entering the country’s most popular resort-island for their “safety.”
“Yes, tourists have to pay insurance. It’s for their protection,” confirmed Mayor Frolibar Bautista.
The Bautista administration said in a notice to the public that Malay Municipal Ordinance No. 2021-444 or the insurance system for “bodily injuries or death that may be sustained by tourists” while in Boracay was implemented on Nov. 23.
The travel insurance is being collected at the jetty port in mainland Malay and is on top of the environmental and terminal fees being paid by tourists.
According to Bautista, a “private company” is collecting travel insurance through a memorandum of agreement signed by the Malay local government.
“It’s a private company. The local government has no share whatsoever,” Bautista said in a phone interview on Saturday, Nov. 26, with the Manila Bulletin.
The Manila Bulletin has learned that the new policy being implemented has caused confusion among travelers and tour operators.
Bautista said that payment of travel insurance is not mandatory despite signing the implementing rules and regulations (IRR) of the ordinance. In particular, Section 5 states that travel insurance must be paid by “all incoming tourists to the island of Boracay.”
“Yes, the IRR states that. But there are those who already have travel insurance from their travel agencies,” Bautista noted.
Bautista admitted that the ordinance’s implementation is still not being fully implemented. “We are still studying it. The implementation is gradual,” Bautista added.