Cebu Pacific lauds PH gov't efforts to simplify travel

By Ma. Cristina Arayata

December 6, 2022, 7:29 pm

<p>(<em>PNA file photo</em>)</p>

(PNA file photo)

MANILA – An executive of low-cost carrier Cebu Pacific (CEB) on Tuesday lauded the government's efforts in simplifying travel protocols.

"Looking back, we were using the One Health Pass (OHP), then it became simpler. We are seeing that requirements for the passengers are becoming simpler," said CEB chief commercial officer Xander Lao.

The government previously required inbound passengers to register with the OHP. A simpler platform, the eTravel , was launched on Monday, and passengers are no longer required to submit paper-based arrival cards.

"I think that is important for a country like the Philippines to attract more tourists. If you go to Singapore, Japan, Thailand, the process is very simple. In Singapore, for instance, all you need to do is fill out a single platform and go to just one counter which is the Immigration," he continued.

Lao noted that what is good about the Philippine government's response is that it continues to ease the requirements for the passengers.

He cited as an example the scrapping of the quarantine upon arrival. Now, passengers no longer have to undergo quarantine as long as they are fully vaccinated.

"I think that's what the passengers are looking for. Passengers are increasing [in areas] where the requirements have been simplified. Hopefully, the government continues to simplify the process, and we hope that at some point it (requirements) would diminish," Lao said.

Meanwhile, CEB reported Tuesday that it has already restored 92 percent of its system-wide pre-pandemic capacity.

The carrier now flies an average of 355 flights a day, covering 34 domestic and 19 international destinations.

CEB flew 13.3 million passengers from January to November 2022, up 493 percent from the same period in 2021, it said. (PNA)