After nearly two years, the Philippines is welcoming back foreign tourists

MANILA, Philippines -- Thursday's lifting of a ban on foreign travel for nearly two years was a lifesaver for the Philippines as an omicron-fueled surge eased.

After nearly two years, the Philippines is welcoming back foreign tourists

MANILA, Philippines -- Thursday's lifting of a ban on foreign travel for nearly two years was a lifesaver for the Philippines as an omicron-fueled surge eased.

Travelers from 157 countries that have visa-free agreements with the Philippines will be welcome back. They will not be required to quarantine once they arrive. A risk classification system which prohibited travelers from worst-hit countries was also abolished by the government.

Berna Romulo Puyat, Tourism Secretary, stated that "we will begin the next chapter on the road to recovery." She stated that the reopening of the border would create revenue and restore jobs in tourism-related businesses and communities.

To quell the pandemic, the Philippines implemented one of the longest lockdowns in the world and the most restrictive quarantine restrictions by the police to stop it from spreading. This was to prevent the worst economic recession since 1940s. It also caused record levels of unemployment and hunger.

According to statistics, more than one million Filipinos lost jobs in tourist destinations and businesses in the first year of pandemic. According to government statistics, tourist destinations, including those on the coast and in tropical islands, looked like ghost towns during the pandemic. A volcanic eruption and typhoons further exacerbated the losses.

ASIA

The Philippines has lifted its ban on foreign tourists

In the festive season, less than 1,000 new cases were reported daily. Large crowds of shoppers returned to shops and restaurants despite government warnings. In mid-January, the subsequent spike reached a peak of 39,000 infections per day. However, it has since subsided. On Wednesday, health officials reported that there were approximately 3,600 cases of infection and 69 deaths. They have also declared the archipelago at "low-to-moderate risk"

Over 60 million of the nearly 110 million Filipinos have been fully immunized against the coronavirus. 8.2 million have also received booster shots. This campaign has been hindered by vaccine shortages, public hesitancy, and other obstacles.

In televised remarks Monday, President Rodrigo Duterte warned Filipinos that they aren't over the hump and encouraged those who were not vaccinated to get vaccinated soon.

The tough-talking president stated, "If you aren't vaccinated and die, well, then I'll tell ya, 'good riddance.'" You can go about your day and get contaminated.

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