NAIA reopens to some international flights on assigned days this week

INTERNATIONAL arrivals into Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport resumed on Monday, May 11 following new guidelines.

The Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) released a Notice to Airmen over the weekend, specifying a new schedule for international chartered and commercial flights to ease congestion into the country’s main gateway.

Chartered flights will be allowed to land on Mondays and Thursdays after securing clearance from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the aviation authority for slotting purposes.

Meanwhile, scheduled commercial flights will be allowed on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and weekends after securing an approval from CAAP 48 hours before their scheduled departure from the airport for the “necessary slotting and rescheduling of flights in order to subscribe to the 400 passengers per day capacity of NAIA.”

The restrictions are slated to last for a month until June 10. Other international airports in the country will have their own guidelines, the CAAP said.

However, emergency flights, ferry flights, cargo flights, air ambulance, and medical supplies flights, government, military flights, weather mitigation flights, maintenance flights, and outbound ferry flights, cargo flights with passengers are not covered by the notice and will remain unrestricted.

The CAAP also clarified that only returning residents, Philippine passport holders, foreign dignitaries and diplomats are allowed to enter the country. Tourists are still not allowed.

Passengers arriving in the country will undergo strict quarantine and testing procedures.

The Philippines on May 3, under the order of National Task Force COVID-19 chief implementer Secretary Carlito Galvez, suspended all the inbound international passenger and commercial flights in and out of the country to further stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“This decision is meant to decongest our quarantine facilities to protect our people by preventing the further spread of COVID-19 and also ensure that our overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) are well taken care of when they arrive from abroad,” he said.

Ritchel Mendiola

Ritchel Mendiola is a staff writer and reporter for the Asian Journal. You can reach her at [email protected].

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