Boracay tourists may be required to wear access bracelets

In order to regulate the number of visitors in Boracay Island, tourists going to the island after its reopening may soon be required to wear access bracelets, according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

Registering in a tourist database may also become a requirement for visitors should the proposed measure be approved before Boracay’s reopening on October 26.

According to Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda, the proposal also sought to require tourists to state the duration of their stay.

The access bracelet may also serve as an alternative payment scheme as it can be loaded with a cash value.

“It is still on the drawing board and will still be finalized,” Antiporda told Philippine Daily Inquirer.

‘Visitors would feel like intruders’

Several residents and business operators, however, expressed their qualms about the access bracelets, saying it would be an imposition on tourists who only want a leisurely stay on the world-famous island.

 One resident said, “Visitors would feel like intruders rather than guests. This is also not feasible to implement and somebody could make money [from] this .”

 Another resident from Barangay Manoc-Manoc said, “This is too much. Many residents here are struggling to meet their daily needs because of the loss of livelihood. Now, they want us to get and pay for another identification or access card?”

 The resident also pointed out that they already have barangay identification cards — a requirement for entering the island.

 “How many times do we have to prove that we are residents here?” the resident asked.

Boracay’s closure to tourists was ordered by President Rodrigo Duterte on April 26 so the island could undergo a six-month rehabilitation. 

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