Closed for six months due to strict community quarantine protocols, the border of Ilocos Norte is now open to tourists.
The Ilocos Norte Tourist Triage South located at the Pinili Visitor Center along the national highway or just about eight-minute drive from the Badoc gateway opened on Thursday to examine tourists who are visiting the province for leisure.
Provincial Tourism head Aianree Raquel said the triage in Pinili is exclusive for visitors from the ridge-to-reef travel corridor covering the provinces of Ilocos Sur, La Union, Pangasinan, and Baguio City.
Upon arrival at the Badoc gateway, Raquel said pre-registered tourists are required to present their safe pass and valid identification card to border controllers.
The safe pass confirms that tourists have arranged accommodation, itinerary, medical certificate, and a negative Covid-19 test result valid not earlier than 48 hours before arrival in Ilocos Norte.
From the gateway, they will proceed to the tourist triage for clearance. Upon clearance, they can now proceed to their pre-booked accommodation and follow the travel itinerary as assisted by a tour guide or tour operator. Check-ins and check-outs are done digitally to easily monitor the whereabouts of tourists.
In an Executive Order No. 93-20, series of 2020 signed by Governor Matthew Joseph Manotoc on Thursday, he stated that tourists who would stay for more than 72 hours but not exceeding seven days from entry shall be required to have another rapid diagnostic testing.
As initial phase for the reopening of tourism sites in the province, only public spaces such as parks, beaches, resorts, and the like are open for tourists subject to minimum health protocols and crowd control.
Tourists must also be assisted by an accredited tour agency that will be made responsible for monitoring the tourists and managing their itinerary. Anyone found violating the tourism guidelines will be penalized under existing laws and ordinances.
Source: Philippines News Agency