World-renowned Boracay island, now under Modified General Community Quarantine or MGCQ, will start accepting domestic tourists from Western Visayas to jumpstart DOT’s domestic tourism campaign starting June 16.
The announcement was held yesterday during the meeting of Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force (BIATF) in the island with virtual press conference. DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu who is the head of the BIATF together with DILG Secretary Eduardo Año, DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, and Aklan Governor Florencio Miraflores, declared Boracay open for tourists coming from other provinces of Western Visayas at the moment pending updated quarantine classifications from other regions that will start on the first week of July.
Western Visayas is composed of provinces Aklan, Antique, Capiz, Guimaras, Iloilo, and Negros Occidental.
“What we saw today is the concerted effort on the part of the Local Government of Malay, Aklan, the various stakeholders and even those outside of the island to show ensuring the safety of visitors to the island is a collective responsibility of everyone,” Puyat noted.
Boracay has had no fresh cases of the Covid-19 virus since May 04 and that has earned for itself an MGCQ status to accept visitors from other places with the same rating.
Safety protocols (e.g. wearing of face masks, social distancing, temperature checks), however, will still be enforced as well as the ban on senior citizens, pregnant and under-17 yrs of age tourists.
Año revealed that there will be no “new normals” deployed until July 01 wherein restrictions will be lifted, adding that it will be the Governor of Aklan, with approval from the Regional IATF, who can declare if Boracay will be under “new normal” status.
“This is a slow-but-sure approach to maintain the status while opening Boracay establishments to boost economic conditions,” said Cimatu.
Puyat appealed to the Boracay establishments to file their applications to open operations as she noted that only 90 out of 390 DOT- accredited hotels and resorts have applied as of press time.