Department of Tourism

Tourism department bans hotel ‘staycations’ during ECQ in ‘NCR Plus’

Rambo Talabong

NO STAYCATIONS. Makati City skyline.

Rappler file photo

Reservations during the ECQ period will be eligible for rebooking without penalty, provided that customers booked directly with the hotels

The Department of Tourism (DOT) banned on Sunday, March 28, the use of hotels for “staycations,” or indoor vacations, while Metro Manila and 4 surrounding provinces remain under enhanced community quarantine (ECQ).

“In an advisory to all hotels, resorts, apartment hotels, motels, and other such establishments in the country, the DOT effectively suspended the operation of ‘staycation’ hotels for leisure guests within the so-called ‘NCR Plus’ bubble, which covers Metro Manila, Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, and Bulacan,” the DOT said in a statement on Sunday.

The government is implementing ECQ in Metro Manila, Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, and Cavite from Monday, March 29, to next Sunday, April 4.

What happens to bookings?

People who are already staying in hotels by midnight on Sunday can continue to stay for the duration of their original booking, but no new bookings will be allowed for the week, according to the DOT.

Meanwhile, reservations during the ECQ period will be eligible for rebooking without penalty, provided that customers booked directly with the hotels.

The DOT advised hotels to strictly enforce the minimum health and safety guidelines, or risk facing sanctions which include fines, suspension, and the cancellation of accreditation.

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Hotel classifications

The DOT classified hotels into 3, namely:

  1. Isolation facilities for COVID-19 positive patients
  2. Quarantine hotels for individuals who must undergo quarantine, such as returning overseas Filipinos; foreign nationals allowed entry to the country; those unable to quarantine in their homes; and health workers who need accommodation near their place of work; and
  3. Regular hotels, which are neither isolation facilities nor quarantine hotels, and which include those with issued certificates of authority to operate for staycation.

According to the DOT, regular hotels under ECQ and modified ECQ can accommodate only guests with long-term leases, locally stranded individuals or those transiting to their place of residence, and authorized persons outside of residence (APOR) pursuant to their official duties. – Rappler.com

Rambo Talabong

Rambo Talabong covers the House of Representatives and local governments for Rappler. Prior to this, he covered security and crime. He was named Jaime V. Ongpin Fellow in 2019 for his reporting on President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs. In 2021, he was selected as a journalism fellow by the Fellowships at Auschwitz for the Study of Professional Ethics.