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This Week in Palawan (October 17 to 23, 2021)

Palawan allows returning residents, tourists

By: Mira Maestrecampo | October 17, 2021
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Quarantine protocols have been heightened down here in the Philippines, making way for the economic and tourism activity to improve, along with tourism destinations like Palawan, among other provinces. Filipino residents are privileged to return to the country with less strict regulations if they are vaccinated. Puerto Princesa and the province of Palawan are now imposing varying quarantine statuses, respectively.

Meanwhile, the education sector also eyes the resuming of in-person classes in areas with low active cases and high vaccination rates. Malls in Palawan are starting to adapt to the new normal setup, welcoming shoppers with sale events, especially this Christmas season. Storms and rainfalls are still expected to happen in Palawan, so it is best to plan out your vacation days considering the weather forecasted to occur on the island.

Quarantine Updates: Palawan allows returning residents, tourists

The Inter-Agency Task Force for the Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases or the IATF-EID has updated the quarantine protocols and the testing requirements for tourists, returning residents, and travelers from outside countries going to the Philippines. Provinces in the Philippines with an improved downgrade of COVID-19 cases, including Palawan, can now accept returning residents and tourists as long as they follow updated quarantine protocols.

Starting on October 13, the IATF-EID declared through Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque that fully vaccinated foreigners and travelers from “green” or low-risk countries do not need to undergo facility-based quarantine upon arrival in the country. For fully vaccinated foreigners entering the country, they must comply with a negative result of the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) test taken 72 hours before leaving their point of origin. These individuals are also advised to undergo self-monitoring for any symptoms in 14 days.

Starting October 8, fully vaccinated individuals from “yellow” or moderate risk countries only need to undergo facility-based quarantine until negative results of the RT-PCR test taken on the fifth day are yielded. He also added that they will be allowed to proceed to home quarantine until their 10th day after yielding the negative results.

Unvaccinated or partially vaccinated persons with unverified vaccination status must go through a facility-based quarantine until they yield the negative result of their RT-PCR test taken on the seventh day.

Presidential Adviser for Entrepreneurship Jose Maria Concepcion is thankful to IATF for heeding the requests of the said sector since this would be a big help to the Filipino citizens, especially local returning residents because the Christmas season is fast approaching. It means that it will also boost the bouncing back of the Philippine economy for this quarter of 2021. [1]

Along with Negros Occidental, Palawan is one of the provinces that has relaxed its domestic travel quarantine restrictions. Coron, Palawan will be accepting fully vaccinated tourists from outside the province under the point-to-point (P2P) bubble tourism policy, effective November 15.

Travel News: Updated travel guidelines in Palawan laid out

Puerto Princesa, Palawan, is placed under general community quarantine (GCQ) until October 31, 2021, until further notice. Regarding the travel restrictions in the province, passengers bound for Palawan must remember the following flight schedules instead of their plans of traveling depending on the point of departure. For Manila passengers bound to Puerto Princesa, they may only take flight PR2785 on Wednesdays. Passengers bound for any municipality in the province of Palawan may book on any flight schedule. As for flights from Cebu going to Puerto Princesa, only the passengers bound for any municipality in Palawan may take flights on Thursdays. These flight schedules are applicable if travelers are flying with Philippine Airlines.

The updated basic travel requirements in Puerto Princesa as of October 12, 2021, are as follows:

● Valid ID
● S-PASS Travel Coordination Permit
● StaySafe QR Code
● Negative RT-PCR Test Result from testing facilities accredited by the DOH using nasopharyngeal swabs taken within forty-eight (48) hours before arrival
● Travel Order / Travel Itinerary (for APORS)
● Vaccination Card or ID (for travelers staying for three days only)
● Returning Ticket (for travelers staying for three days only)

As for the province of Palawan, modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) is imposed by the government until October 31, 2021, until further notice. The province of Palawan shall implement a 14-day mandatory facility-based quarantine to all inbound travelers, except repatriated OFWs or returning overseas Filipinos who have undergone complete quarantine certified by the Bureau of Quarantine (BOQ).

Another set of travelers under this exemption is the essential travel of national government authorized persons outside of residence (APORs) and those involved in conducting and reinforcing COVID-19 vaccination teams. These individuals also have a quarantine certificate by the Department of Health DOH) or BOQ, granted unfettered entry to the final government unit of destination.

The Municipality of Taytay, Palawan, is placed under modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) starting October 10 until October 23, 2021.

Shopping News: NCCC Mall Halloween events

NCCC Mall Palawan will host Halloween Activities with their MonSTAR Halloween event. They will have an NCCC Malls Shopping Assistant Exclusive Pick a Treat from October 25-30, 2021, and a Digital Trick or Treat from October 25 until the end of October.

Health News: COVID-19 cases in Palawan reportedly decreased

Active cases of COVID-19 in Palawan have currently lowered down. From a high rate that reached 250 cases, it has significantly lowered to 183 as per recent news. [2]

The Commission on Higher Education (CHED) recently allowed actual in-person classes in areas with low active cases and high vaccination rates. Chairman Prospero de Vera declared that the education sector is currently eyeing the possibility of limited in-person or face-to-face classes for all degree programs in such areas. However, De Vera also said that higher education institutions far from Metro Manila are usually the areas that need to improve their vaccination rates, including the Palawan State University and Aklan State University. CHED has released orders for these institutions to coordinate with their government units to raise the vaccination rates in their respective localities. [3]

Weather Forecasts

After tropical storm Maring moves away from the Philippines, it still lands heavy rain in other areas. It is found that the said storm has merged with now low-pressure area Nando, as per the state weather bureau. The enhancement of the south-westerlies might bring rains to Palawan and Occidental Mindoro, alongside other areas. [4]

There is still a thunderstorm risk, but expect cloudy days from October 17 with possible patchy rains. Clear skies, but a few rain showers are forecasted from October 20 to October 23. [5]

Visit Yoorekka Consumer Magazine for more travel and COVID-19 updates and guidelines in Palawan!

All details and information in this article are true and accurate as of the publication date. However, while we are making our utmost effort to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, the condition surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be unpredictable, and the situation develops rapidly. Hence, some information and recommendations may have changed since this article was published. For the latest advice, visit DOH and your LGU's official websites.


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About Mira Maestrecampo
Mira - with a long surname - is a girl who dreams of becoming a news anchor someday, in God's perfect time. She loves to read books and eat different kinds of cheesy or saucy food. A coffee addict and a dog lover, she loves long hugs, hot coffee on an afternoon break with friends, or simply sleeping all day with her stuffed unicorns.
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Disclaimer: All articles in the Consumers Magazine of Yoorekka are for general information and entertainment purposes only. Although careful research has been made in writing them, Yoorekka does not make any warranty about the completeness and accuracy of all information presented in our articles. Our content is not intended to be used in place of legal, medical, or any professional advice.
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