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READ: Do you need a COVID test for Boracay, Siargao or Palawan even if you’re fully vaccinated?

By Tanya Lara Published Jul 13, 2021 6:30 pm

The short answer is yes. The long answer is after Malacañang announced that you don’t, it walked back its policy just days later via Health Secretary Francisco Duque III.

We are back where we began in the fourth quarter of 2020 when domestic destinations began opening up.

The Philippines’ top 3 tourist destinations—Boracay, Siargao and Palawan—which regularly make it to various international lists of Most Beautiful Islands in the World—are now open to domestic tourists.

Here’s what you need to know before booking your flights and hotels.


Closed to tourists until Aug. 1.

El Nido
Negative RT-PCR test result required, test taken within 72 hours from arrival, regardless of vaccination status. Also required are round-trip tickets and booking in a DOT-accredited accommodation establishment; Tourist QT Code (email [email protected]), which will be scanned at any of Palawan’s airports (Lio, Busuanga, San Vicente or Puerto Princesa), hotels and tourism-related establishments); and an S-Pass, which you can apply for here.

El Nido, Palawan. Photo by Tanya Lara 

San Vicente (Port Barton)
Go for the turtles and the beautiful, isolated island of Port Barton! A negative RT-PCR test result is required along with proof of accommodation in a DOT-authorized, TIEZA-licensed establishments; roundtrip tickets; an accomplished health declaration, registration form and pledge to be a responsible tourist which you can get at; and S Pass registration. An antigen test on the 7th day of your stay is also required, at your own cost.

Port Barton, San Vicente, Palawan. Photo by Tanya Lara

Puerto Princesa
Tourists need a negative PCR /saliva test result within 48 hours before their flight. They also need to register for an S-Pass and download their QR Code from Staysafe.Ph.

Flights are regulated as well. They should only be one of the following: Monday—Cebu Pacific 5J 643, ETA 8:10 a.m.; Wednesday—PAL PR 2785, ETA 2:45 p.m.; Friday—AirAsia Z2 426, ETA 10:10 a.m. The City Mayor’s Office Facebook page doesn’t mention the return flights to Manila.


Siargao.  Photo from Shutterstock

The teardrop-shaped island beloved by many requires a negative COVID test released not more than 48 hours from arrival for those not vaccinated, partially vaccinated or fully vaccinated.

An antigen test five days upon arrival is also mandatory for ALL tourists at their own cost. Those who will test positive must do a swab or saliva RT-PCR test also at their own cost.

According to Surigao del Norte’s Facebook page, tourists must have at least two nights of confirmed booking in a DOT-authorized accommodation establishment.


Boracay doesn’t produce anything, doesn’t have any other industry except for tourism. Go now because it needs our help, just as much as we need its lovely beaches and sunsets.

White Beach, Boracay.  Photo by Tanya Lara 

Like before, a negative swab test 72 hours before flight is required. Register for your QR Code at Tourist Boracay and email your requirements (flight and hotel confirmations, screenshot of government ID) to [email protected] to get your health declaration card.

Banner and thumbnail photos by Tanya Lara