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2021 • 12 • 03

The holidays are upon us! Christmas carols have begun filling the airwaves, colorful lights have started twinkling on building facades, and mainstream media have been painting winter wonderland. But for many of us, the White Christmas of our dreams isn’t made of snow but of powdery white sand!

If you’re a beach bum, you’ve probably been missing the sea, the sand, and the sun. If you’re a nature-lover, you’re most likely aching for some adventure! Thankfully, more and more island destinations have opened to leisure travelers. However, because we are still in a pandemic, all destinations still implement travel guidelines and requirements for the health and safety of both the tourists and the locals in those areas.

These requirements vary depending on the LGU of your destination, and they also differ if you’re full-vaccinated or not. Some destinations no longer require a COVID-19 test for fully vaccinated individuals, but others still do. Some of these destinations, not all, also require confirmed hotel reservation.

For this article, we’ve teamed up with RedDoorz, the largest online hotel management and booking platform in Southeast Asia, to compile some of the most popular beach destinations and the corresponding requirements that you must prepare should you plan to visit.

If you’re the budget-conscious or budget-savvy type, we’ve also listed down bang-for-the-buck RedDoorz properties in these areas.

Aside from strictly adhering to government policies, RedDoorz also launched HygienePass, a cleanliness and sanitation program to help travelers easily identify hotels that prioritize health and safety! As of this writing, there are over 100 hotels that are HygienePass Certified that you can book with RedDoorz.

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For more info about RedDoorz, watch the video below.

In the Where to Stay sections below, you’ll find a list of links to RedDoorz properties that you may check out. Note that some of these are located in the city center and may not be near the beach but can still be used as a base when exploring the rest of the island or province.

Without further ado, here are the requirements for tourists who intend to visit some of the best beach destinations in the country as of the indicated date. Keep in mind that these policies could change so it is best to check with the LGU for updates.

Boracay

#TuloyTuloyLang ang summer vibe kahit taglamig!

Boracay Paraw Sailboats

The country’s poster beach destination, Boracay is one of the first islands to reopen to tourists. White Beach is an attraction in itself, but there are more beaches you can check out here including Puka Beach, Diniwid Beach, Bulabog Beach, and Cagban Beach to name a few. You can also enjoy water activities like paddle boarding, parasailing, and banana boating.

Travel Requirements

As of 16 November 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Individuals:

  • Screenshot of OHDC Confirmation form from touristboracay.com. Register as tourist and take a screenshot of the confirmation page.
  • Proof of identification with Philippine Residency
  • Copy of confirmed booking slip/form from a DOT accredited Boracay accommodation establishment
  • Roundtrip flight/travel (Tourists must fly to and from Caticlan airport only)
  • VaxCertPH Covid-19 Vaccination Certificate with full vaccination status from vaxcert.doh.gov.ph, or
    Locally-issued Vaccination Card/ ID with full vaccination status and with verifiable QR code, or
    Locally-issued Vaccination Card/ ID with full vaccination status and with Certificate of Vaccination from vaccination center with contact details

For Unvaccinated or Partially Vaccinated Individuals:

  • Screenshot of OHDC Confirmation form from touristboracay.com. Register as tourist and take a screenshot of the confirmation page.
  • Proof of identification with Philippine Residency
  • Copy of confirmed booking slip/form from a DOT accredited Boracay accommodation establishment
  • Roundtrip flight/travel (Tourists must fly to and from Caticlan airport only)
  • RT-PCR Negative Result Certificate (saliva, nasopharyngeal or oropharyngeal) taken 72 hours from the travel date.

Note: These requirements must be sent to touristboracay@gmail.com with the subject OHDC-FamilyName, FirstName – Date of Travel (MM-DD-YYYY) at least 24 hours before your flight.

Where to Stay

RedDoorz Premium @ Nigi Nigi Nu Noos Station 2 Boracay
RedDoorz Premium @ Nigi Nigi Nu Noos Station 2 Boracay

Siargao

#TuloyTuloyLang ang island life fantasy realness!

Daku Island Siargao
Daku Island

Siargao is often called the Surfing Capital of the Philippines, but it is a paradise for non-surfers too! This teardrop-shaped island has many captivating attractions you can revel in including the three islands Naked, Guyam, and Daku. You can also go to Sugba Lagoon and explore by paddle boarding, canoeing, bamboo rafting, or snorkeling.

If you want to ride the waves, there are many surf breaks for different levels of expertise. You may also get surfing lessons if you haven’t tried it before.

Travel Requirements

As of 20 November 2021

For Walk-in Tourists:

  • Travel Coordination Permit (TCP). Register and apply for a TCP at least one day before your departure at s-pass.ph and submit the following requirements:
  • Negative RT-PCR (Swab/Saliva) test result taken within 48 hours prior to arrival in Siargao
  • Valid ID with address
  • Confirmed booking for at least 2 nights at a DOT-accredited accommodation

For Invited Tourists:

  • Travel Coordination Permit (TCP). Register on s-pass.ph and apply for a TCP at least a day before your travel by submitting the following requirements:
  • Negative RT-PCR (Swab/Saliva) test result taken within 48 hours prior to arrival in Siargao
  • Valid ID with address
  • Travel Certification issued by the Mayor of the destination, stating your a tourist invited by a local

Where to Stay

Maharlika Siargao
RedDoorz Maharlika Siargao

Zambales

#TuloyTuloyLang ang pak na pak na road trips!

Beach in Zambales

If you’re coming from Manila and you want to have a quick getaway, Zambales is probably among the top destinations you’re considering. It is only a few hours away from the city so you can go on a weekend road trip here.

The most popular beach attractions here are Anawangin Cove and Nagsasa Cove near Pundaquit, San Antonio. You can also go to Potipot Island and Liwliwa Beach if you want a more quiet time. Subic is also a classic choice, especially if you also plan on going on a shopping spree after.

Travel Requirements

As of: 22 November 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Individuals (final dose administered at least 1 month prior to travel):

  • Valid ID
  • Confirmed booking at accommodation establishments with DOT-accreditation or LCOC
  • Negative Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) result performed by a medical clinic or hospital 24-hours prior to travel.
  • Vaccination Card
  • QR-coded Travelers Pass (QTP) from Zambales VISITA. Register and schedule your visit at visita.zambales.gov.ph and print or save a copy of your QTP.

For Unvaccinated & Partially Vaccinated Individuals:

  • Valid ID
  • Confirmed booking at accommodation establishments with DOT-accreditation or LCOC
  • Negative RT-PCR test result performed by a DOH accredited facility 48-hours prior to travel or negative Saliva RT-PCR test from Philippine Red Cross 48-hours prior to travel.
  • QR-coded Travelers Pass (QTP) from Zambales VISITA. Register and schedule your visit at visita.zambales.gov.ph and print or save a copy of your QTP.

For Children Below 18 Years Old

  • Traveling with fully-vaccinated parents or guardians: Negative Antigen Antigen Test (RAT) result performed by a medical clinic or hospital 24 hours prior to travel
  • Traveling with unvaccinated or partially-vaccinated parents or guardians: Negative RT-PCR test result performed by a DOH accredited facility 48 hours prior to travel

Children 2 years old and below are not allowed as advised by the Department of Health

Where to Stay

RedDoorz Plus @ JNV Dream Hotel Subic Zambales
RedDoorz Plus @ JNV Dream Hotel Subic Zambales

Cebu

#TuloyTuloyLang ang wiiiiild adventures!

Bantayan Island
Bantayan Island

You will not run out of beaches and adventures in Cebu. From snorkeling or diving to see the sardine run in Moalboal, to seeing the Thresher sharks and wakeboarding in Malapascua. And if you just want to chill on the beach, the white sand beaches in Sumilon Island and Bantayan Island got you covered.

Rules are different for Cebu City and the rest of the province.

Cebu Province Travel Requirements

As of: 30 October 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Travelers:

  • Vaccination Card or Vaccination Certificate
  • Valid ID
  • Passed symptom checking or screening at the port upon arrival and upon boarding

For Unvaccinated or Partially Vaccinated Travelers:

  • Medical Certificate
  • Valid ID
  • Passed symptom checking or screening at the port upon arrival and upon boarding

Cebu City Travel Requirements

As of: 30 October 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Travelers:

  • Valid ID
  • Vaccination Card, with QR Code. If without QR code, present the official vaccination certificate issued by the Local Health Officer of the LGU concerned or Vaccination Certificate issued by the DOH-Bureau of Quarantine.

For Unvaccinated or Partially Vaccinated Travelers: any of the following:

  • Negative RT-PCR test result taken within 72 hours from the scheduled arrival, or
  • Negative Antigen Test Result taken within 48 hours from scheduled arrival, or
  • Negative Saliva Test result taken within the last 48 hours from scheduled arrival

Where to Stay

RedDoorz Hostel @ St. Paul Village LapuLapu
RedDoorz Hostel @ St. Paul Village Lapu Lapu

Bohol

#TuloyTuloyLang ang wow moments and travel #goals!

The Chocolate Hills
The Chocolate Hills

The Chocolate Hills may be the first attraction many would think of when you mention Bohol, but this province also boasts plenty of beautiful beaches and wonderful dive sites. If you want to stay close to the beach, staying along Alona Beach or Danao Beach is something you should consider. You can also go island hopping and visit Balicasag Island where you can go snorkeling or diving.

Travel Requirements

As of 31 October 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Individuals:

  • Vaccination Card
  • Valid ID
  • Approved or Pending Approval S-Pass. Register at s-pass.ph and apply for a Travel Coordination permit.

For Partially Vaccinated and Non-Vaccinated individuals:

  • Negative RT-PCR Test Result taken within 72 hours from scheduled arrival
  • Valid ID
  • Approved or Pending Approval S-Pass

Where to Stay:

RedDoorz Plus near Holy Name University Medical Center
RedDoorz Plus near Holy Name University Medical Center

Coron

#TuloyTuloyLang ang island hopping escapade!

Drone shot of Black Island

Coron has some of the most diverse landscapes and seascapes in the country. On the surface, you can see picturesque karst cliffs, breathtaking beaches, lakes, and lagoons. Underneath the waves, you’ll be greeted by a colorful world where you can explore shipwrecks and coral gardens. You can also hop on a boat and go island hopping to visit nearby islands.

Note: Only fully-vaccinated tourists and minors accompanied by fully-vaccinated parents or guardians are allowed to visit.

Travel Requirements

As of 8 November 2021

Travel Coordination Permit (TCP) from S-Pass. To apply for a TCP, register at s-pass.ph and submit the following requirements:

  • Valid ID
  • QR Coded Negative RT-PCR Test result taken within 72 hours from the date of arrival with official receipt
  • Vaccination Card
  • Confirmed hotel, tour or diving booking

Where to Stay

RedDoorz @ G Travel Lodge
RedDoorz @ G Travel Lodge

La Union

#TuloyTuloyLang ang surf-and-burp getaway!

La Union Surfing

Another popular surfing spot in the Philippines, La Union is very accessible to those who are coming from Metro Manila. Getting here takes a 5-7 hour drive or bus ride from Manila. You can spend your time surfing or swimming in Urbiztondo Beach. But you can also go to the nearby town of Luna to check out the pebble beach. If you’re looking for other activities aside from the beach, you can trek to Tangandan Falls.

The municipality of Agoo is also a rising tourist destination.

La Union also has a burgeoning food scene as more notable restaurants and cafes mushroom along its beaches and streets!

Travel Requirements

As of 17 November 2021

For Fully Vaccinated Travelers:

  • QR-coded Tourist Pass (QTP) from Tara na Visita System. Register at https://tarana.launion.gov.ph, apply for a Tourist Pass, and submit the following requirements:
  • Government Issued ID
  • Pre-booked arrangement from DOT Accredited Tour Operator
  • COVID-19 Vaccination Card
  • Negative Antigen Test Result taken within 3 days prior to your travel date

For Unvaccinated or Partially Vaccinated Travelers:

  • QR-coded Tourist Pass (QTP) from Tara na Visita System. Go to https://tarana.launion.gov.ph to register. Then, apply for a Tourist Pass and submit the following requirements:
  • Government Issued ID
  • Pre-booked arrangement from DOT-accredited Tour Operator
  • Negative RT-PCR Test Result taken within 3 days prior to your travel date.

Where to Stay


Again, if you decide to book with RedDoorz, don’t forget to use the RDTULOYNA promo code to get 15% OFF the regular rates!

That’s it for now. Plan smart, travel safe, and make every trip worth it!



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eric

Hello Poor Travelers,

I’ve been ranting on your posts for some time now about how provincial governments shoot themselves in the foot with stupid, over-the-top restrictions. And killing their tourist industry in the process.

Is the Philippines One Country or 81 mini-countries? It’s like Zambales is South Korea and Metro Manila is North Korea. North Koreans not welcome in Zambales!

All this time, I’ve wanted to get the hell out of Metro to a relaxing beach.

Based on this new post… Hooray, Bohol! No PCR test. No kick-back government-approved lodging. At last, a provincial government gets it right.

Any provincial government with two brain cells should follow the Bohol example.

Yoshke Dimen

Hi Eric, yeah, would be great if everything could be simplified. And they change frequently and quickly too. I understand the constant, frequent updating but it’s just hard to keep track of over a dozen destinations when each has their own set of requirements.

eric

Hi Yoshke.

Since you guys are more on top of shifting rules and regulations on domestic travel than the rest of us, I have a reader-friendly suggestion. Create a page with a table on it, listing provinces down the left and travel requirements along the top. Application to provincial authority required? PCR required? Government-approved accommodation required? Etc.

No need to list every province, of course. Although I went to Jolo and Tawi-Tawi years ago, I won’t go there now! You could start with the destinations on this page.

You could update it on-the-fly, as provinces come to their senses, sparing you the need to create new pages like this one.

I would bookmark such a page and check back frequently, to see where it’s possible to go with the least hassle and expense.

Thanks for all your work!