MANILA - The tourism and the interior and local government departments said they are working to streamline travel rules in tourist destinations to boost tourism.
According to a survey by the Asian Institute of Management (AIM), 81 percent of respondents said they found it inconvenient to follow the varying travel requirements of local government units (LGU).
Tourists also cited the cost of COVID-19 testing, the procedures for testing, and the lack of information about requirements as further inconveniences.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said in a recent press conference that the agency supports and encourages proposals to standardize travel requirements.
At present, some LGUs require RT-PCR tests while others require antigen tests. Some require medical certificates, permits to travel or enter, while others require a quarantine period even with negative RT-PCR results. Other areas accept children while some do not.
"Some destinations not yet opening; they are asking what works with others so they would just copy it. DILG is also doing their part, of course not just for the tourist destination," Puyat said.
Jonathan Malaya, DILG Undersecretary, said in an interview with ANC Headstart that they also aim to streamline the fragmented rules and requirements of various LGUs to help the travel & tourism industry.
“We're not saying we should do away with all travel restrictions. I'm saying, let's require something common for all travelers. Will it be an RT-PCR test, or an antigen test? We are now at our stage where our economy is significantly being hurt by the pandemic," Malaya said.