Things you should know when leaving the metro or your province
September 2, 2020
Last August 31, 2020, President Rodrigo Duterte, together with the Inter-agency Task Force against Infectious Disease (IATF), has announced that Metro Manila will remain under the general community quarantine (GCQ) for the rest of the month of September. Provinces of Bulacan and Batangas and cities of Tacloban and Bacolod will remain on the same policy.
Meanwhile, the rest of the country will be under the modified general community quarantine (MGCQ) except for Iligan City which was placed under stricter modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ).
What do these policies mean? Do we have a lenient and easy-going quarantine for the rest of the country? Can we leave our place and go out-of-town for a vacation?
No, you can’t. Dismiss that idea.
Yes, sometimes GCQ or MGCQ’s meaning were abused to an easier way to move around places, but mostly it’s within your province or within the capital region only.
Last June 3, 2020, Police Lieutenant General Guillermo Eleazar, commander of Joint Task Force COVID-Shield, released some guidelines to qualify which travel is valid or not.
Everyone is typically can go out of their homes without a quarantine pass. It is not a requirement anymore when doing grocery shopping and other essential activities.
On the other hand, local government units (LGUs) can still promulgate policies requiring quarantine passes if they perceived that COVID-19 cases in their places are still increasing.
Quarantine passes are not infinite passes that can be used as precedence with local governments’ policies such as curfews.
The age limit remains the same: those 20 years old and below and 60 years old and above are encouraged to stay home.
Photo Credit: Top Gear Philippines
You need to obtain a travel authority from the local police office if you are leaving your province or Metro Manila to attend to a family or medical emergency. A ‘locally stranded individual’ (LSI) should have this travel authority when going home to the province or going home to Metro Manila.
FYI: A student or worker who got stranded in a particular area during the imposition of the enhanced community quarantine (ECQ), is considered an LSI.
However, you don’t need to secure a travel authority when you are travelling within the same province or within the capital region. If you are attending to a critical medical emergency or a sudden death of an immediate family member and need to go out of Metro Manila or the province and vice versa, you will be allowed to travel.
You are permissible to move across borders if you are an ‘authorized person outside of residence’ (APOR). Medical frontliners and persons working for industries allowed to operate under GCQ and MGCQ are APOR. Just don’t forget to bring your company ID and certificate of employment while travelling.
Photo Credit: ABS-CBN News
HOW TO OBTAIN TRAVEL AUTHORITY
You are required to obtain your travel authority to the chief of the city or municipal police station if you’re taking a trip to another province within the same region. On the other hand, if you’re travelling from one region to another, you have to apply travel authority to the director of the district or provincial police.
Somehow, you must check your maps before travelling. So, consider, if you’re moving from Cagayan (Region II) to Ilocos Norte (Region I), you are actually traversing two different regions even if these provinces are just next to each other.
You will be needing a medical clearance certificate from the local health office to be submitted on the police office.
When cleared to travel, minimum safety and health protocols such as wearing of face masks and physical distancing must always be observed.
Always bear in mind, travel for leisure still isn’t allowed. The police will not issue a travel authority for your vacation or escapade.
Stay safe and sound.
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