Around 7,200 hotels and resorts have so far been allowed to operate since the first community quarantine was imposed in the country signaling the sector’s bid to gradually recover from the effects of the pandemic, the Department of Tourism (DOT) announced Tuesday.
The accommodation establishments are in the areas under various quarantine classifications and shall cater to different types of travelers, depending on their location and purpose.
“Not only will a Certificate of Authority to Operate (CAO) or a provisional CAO from DOT indicate the allowable operation of accommodation establishments, it likewise adds to guests’ confidence, knowing that these establishments have been inspected and are compliant with our protocols that follow globally-recognized health and safety standards. We are happy to see the numbers go up as more tourism destinations reopen for domestic travelers,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said.
The regions with the highest number of hotels and resorts issued with CAOs and PCAOs are Region 4A with 1,303; Region 3 with 830; and Region 1 with 806.
Since the onset of quarantine restrictions in March, the DOT has been issuing CAOS and PCAOs to establishments to accommodate repatriated overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), essential workers, and foreign and domestic tourists stranded due to travel restrictions.
Inbound travel for leisure remains restricted but the DOT is in the works to boost the country’s domestic tourism by slowly reopening destinations with less to zero cases of Covid-19.
Romulo-Puyat said the DOT would continue coordinating with national government agencies, local government units, and stakeholders to safely reopen more destinations and steer the industry to recovery.
“The DOT’s focus is to jumpstart domestic tourism first. We will continue our thorough inspection of the health and safety protocols in tourism establishments, so when non-essential travel among Filipinos and even inbound travel for leisure among foreign visitors are allowed, these will be ready,” she said. (PNA)