MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Immigration (BI) reminds Filipino travelers planning to go abroad to strictly comply with the requirements set by the government to be able to leave the country.
According to Immigration Commissioner Jaime Morente, the recent lifting of restrictions on non-essential travels of outbound Filipinos does not mean anyone can just leave the country as they please.
“We will be very strict in seeing to it that these requirements are fully complied with, otherwise we will not allow them to leave,” he said.
The official said that the only ones exempted from complying with the conditions imposed are permanent residents, overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) with valid contracts, and holders of study visa in their country of destination.
“Unless your purpose in going abroad is really very important that you cannot forego, we advise you to stay until this pandemic is over as the risk of you getting infected by the virus is still very serious,” the BI Chief warned.
Meanwhile, the BI Port Operations has instructed all its personnel in different international ports to strictly screen the requirements presented by outbound Filipino travelers as set by theInter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) which include:
- Confirmed return ticket for those traveling on tourist visas;
- Adequate travel and health insurance to cover rebooking; and
- Accommodation expenses if stranded, and hospitalization if infected.
BI Port Operations Acting Chief Grifton Medina reminds travelers to first ascertain if the country of destination has not imposed restrictions on the entry of Filipinos so as not to be turned away and sent back to Manila.
“They are also required to sign, by their airlines, a declaration acknowledging the risks involved in their travel. They will be informed that upon their return, they will be swab tested for COVID-19 and undergo hotel quarantine,” Medina added.
Medina added that even if passengers have complete requirements, they will still be subjected to rigid inspection to make sure that these travelers are not victims of human trafficking and illegal recruitment.
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