Boracay reopens, receives this number of tourists from Metro Manila

Although the world is still in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, some parts are opening up in hopes of kickstarting the economy.

In the Philippines, the iconic island of Boracay decided to open its doors to domestic tourists beginning Wednesday, October 1.

Department of Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat mentioned that reopening this island plays a critical role in rebooting tourism destinations in the Philippines.

“All the other tourist destinations, even if these are under MGCQ (modified general community quarantine), they are still hesitant to open to tourists outside of their province. So all eyes are on Boracay, how the protocols will be in place,” Puyat said.

With this, seven tourists from Metro Manila headed to Boracay on the first day that it is reopened, Puyat disclosed. The visitors arrived in Caticlan through a Cebu Pacific Air flight.

The small number of tourists coming in is seen as a good testing ground for health and safety protocols in the island.

“I’m expecting that more people will come during the All Saints’ Day celebration. It’s better now that they’re coming little by little. It will be hard if people rush in and we’re not prepared,” Puyat said.

Boracay has no reported coronavirus cases, Puyat added. She promised government support in ensuring that health and safety protocols are in place.

“The DOT, the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force, Department of Environment and Natural Resources under Secretary Roy Cimatu, Department of the Interior and Local Government under Secretary Eduardo Año, the province of Aklan and the municipality of Malay have implemented enhanced hygiene and safety protocols in entry points, accommodations and activities,” Puyat said. “We advise all tourists to be on strict quarantine immediately after the PCR test and until the time of travel to the island to ensure that they will remain COVID-19 free before they visit Boracay.”

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