Travelers discouraged from visiting the Philippines until expiration of latest travel ban

The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs. (Photo from the DFA Facebook account)

The Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) is discouraging people from traveling to the Philippines until after the latest travel ban issued by the Philippine government is lifted.

“The DFA strongly advises that all travelers to the country carefully reconsider their travel plans, including postponing their trips until after the end of the travel restrictions to avoid personal inconvenience and possible additional expenses, as well as help prevent the incidence of the new COVID-19 strain in the country,” the DFA said in a statement.

The statement comes in the wake of a new ban announced by the Philippines expanding its travel ban to 20 more countries after a new strain of the coronavirus was discovered.

The additional countries under the ban are: Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, SAR, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Switzerland, Singapore, Sweden South Korea, South Africa, Spain, and The Netherlands.

The United States is not included in this latest travel ban.

However, Filipinos on Guam and other overseas Filipinos face the prospect of being quarantined in the Philippines for 14 days even if they have a negative COVID test result.

Thus, DFA is “strongly urging” all overseas Filipinos to reconsider travel plans to the Philippines for the duration of the travel restrictions, which are set to end on Jan. 15, 2021.

To date, the Philippines has recorded a total of 474,064 cases of COVID-19, with over 430,000 recoveries and 9,244 deaths, the Philippine Daily Inquirer reported.