Australian Embassy
The Philippines

COVID-19 Updates

 

Australians in the Philippines    

Contents

1.  Travelling to Australia

2.   Cap on international arrivals into Australia and seeking exemptions

3.   Financial support

4.   Hotel quarantine in Australia

5.   Current developments in the Philippines

6.   Health concerns

7.   Australian visas (Department of Home Affairs)

8.   Philippines visas

9.   Travelling to the Philippines

10. The Australian Embassy

11. Useful links

 

1. Travelling to Australia

A number of measures have been put in place by the Australian government to manage the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia. 

Returning to Australia from overseas is still challenging. We know this is a very stressful time for those trying to come home. We encourage you to be patient and be prepared for delays and disruptions to your travel plan.

The following websites provide general information to assist and guide you as a start:

COVID-19: Trying to get home | Smartraveller

Coming to Australia | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au)

 

1.1 Flight options

There are numerous airlines operating weekly commercial schedules that have connections to Australia. You can make domestic connections once you have arrived in Australia and completed the 14 days mandatory quarantine.

Consider using a travel agent to explore all flight options available. You can discuss your personal circumstances and preferences with the agent. Alternatively, you can call the airlines directly (suggest you call rather than utilise their website or other search engines which may not have the most up to date information).

We suggest you maintain regular contact with your airline or travel agent for updated options.

When making your booking, please ensure you:

  • Understand the transit requirements of the foreign country you are transiting in. Some countries require that your flight is with the one carrier right through to your final destination and you cannot leave or change terminals or be subject to the quarantine requirements of that country.
  • Are aware of the travel requirements such as:

                        - a negative COVID-19 test prior to departure (see below 1.3);

                        - wearing a face masks or face shield etc on board;

                        - lack of refreshments/meals on board; 

                        - any forms that need completing for any transit countries prior to departure

                        - confirm you have six (6) months validity on your passport for any transit countries; and  

                        - ensure your visa is up to date to date ((see below 8)

  • Suggest you confirm directly with the airline or embassy of the country you are transiting.

You may seek a travel exemption from the existing arrivals caps (see below 2.1) to assist secure you booking.

Financial support is available. See 3 below.

 

1.2 Pre-departure COVID-19 testing requirements

Australian authorities require evidence of a negative COVID-19 PCR or RT-PCR test, taken within 72 hours or less prior to your scheduled flight departure. However, some airlines require the test to be taken with 48 hours. 

As airlines and transiting country protocols may differ, it is important that you check and fully understand the requirements of the airline you are travelling with and the country you are transiting through. Evidence is required at the time of check in with your airline. 

Rapid antigen tests will not be accepted. Testing must be conducted at an accredited testing facility, a self-administered COVID-19 test undertaken at home without supervision is not acceptable.

To obtain a COVID-19 test, please visit the following website for a list of accredited testing laboratories in the Philippines. Licensed COVID-19 Testing Laboratories in the Philippines | Department of Health website (doh.gov.ph) 

The wearing of masks is mandatory for all international and domestic flights to and within Australia.

For detailed advice on returning to Australia, visit Re-entry and quarantine | Smartraveller and Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for international travellers | Australian Government Department of Health. 

 

1.3 Australian Travel Declaration form - complete before arrival in Australia

You should complete the Australia Travel Declaration form at least 72 hours before your departure for Australia. The Declaration collects your information to help the Australian Government determine your quarantine arrangements and also allows the relevant health departments to contact you if someone you travelled with tests positive for COVID-19. Australia Travel Declaration | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au).

 

1.4 Visa and immigration matters 

Ensure your visa is update to date and you have all necessary paperwork to depart the Philippines.  If you have been in the country for more than six months you will need an Emigration Exit Clearance (EEC) and should contact the Bureau of Immigration well in advance of departing.  You will need to allow to time to complete this requirement. See 8 and 8.3 below.

Ensure your Australian visa (if relevant) is up to date and you have obtained a travel exemption to enter Australia if necessary.  See 7 below.

 

1.5 Philippine Medical Clearance and Travel Pass

Each provincial area (Barangay) are managing and implementing their own quarantine measures. We recommend you contact your local Barangay and seek their advice on whether medical clearance and/or travel passes are required in order for you to travel to the airport. 

 

1.6 Manila airport notice to all passengers

The Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) and Department of Transport (DOTr) requires all passengers to download and register an account in the TRAZE CONTACT TRACING mobile App prior to entry at the Nino Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Manila Terminals. Failure to do so may restrict you from entering the airport to catch your flight. For those who cannot access the Traze App due to gadget limitations, personnel at the Malasakit help desks will be on hand to assist you in printing a QR code for your use. 

For further details, questions, or to download the app, visit the official Traze Philippines website.

 

1.7 Airport departure tax

If you're leaving the Philippines from Mactan-Cebu or Clark International Airports, you need to pay a departure tax.

If you leave Nino Aquino International Airport in Manila, there's no departure tax.

 

1.8 Repatriation flights

The Australian Embassy facilitated a number of flights to Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane in April and May 2020. We are not facilitating any further flights at this time. Numerous commercial flights are operating. See 1.1 and 1.2 above.

The Australian government is prioritising vulnerable Australians and continues to work with airlines and other key partners on options available. Should you have any medical or other compelling issues that require you to return to Australia urgently please email us on [email protected].

 

2.Cap on international arrivals in Australia and seeking exemptions

The decision to introduce the temporary caps on international arrivals was taken by the National Cabinet to safeguard the Australian community and to ensure there is sufficient quarantine capacity to meet the needs of inbound travellers. Australian health experts agree that the most effective measure to manage the spread of COVID-19 from overseas is quarantine and managing the pressure on quarantine facilities is required to achieve this.

We understand that if someone is able to gain a quarantine exemption from the state government of their intended port of entry (i.e. due to medical reasons, essential worker status or on compassionate grounds), they can theoretically be exempt from the cap. See item 6 below for more information on seeking exemptions from hotel quarantine.

For the latest National Cabinet advice see Media Centre | Prime Minister of Australia (pm.gov.au)

 

2.1 Seeking a travel exemption from the cap

If you need to travel due to medical reasons, on compassionate grounds or are considered an essential worker you may be able to secure a travel exemption from the existing caps on arrivals into Australia. This may assist secure an additional seat on a flight.

Your airline can contact the Australian Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications on your behalf to request a travel exemption.

The Department has provided all airlines instructions on how to apply for the travel exemption. You will need to provide supporting evidence to your airline. If your airline is able to secure you an exemption on your behalf, this may assist to prioritise you on a flight.

Please note, the Australian Embassy has no authority in this process. You should discuss it directly with your airline.

 

3.Financial support

3.1 COVID-19: Overseas financial assistance | Smartraveller packages

Financial support for Australian citizens trying to return home is available. There are two types of interest-free loans available:

  • Flight back to Australia: a one-off loan to help cover the costs of a flight to return to Australia (you will be asked to repay AUD750, regardless of how much the flight costs, the government will meet the fare difference)
  • Living costs: a one-off loan to cover emergency living costs until a commercial flight becomes available (loan amount is based on family composition and starts from AUD2,000)

You will have to meet strict eligibility criteria. All loans must be repaid. However:

  • Australian pension holders may be eligible to receive a grant instead of a loan. This means you wouldn’t have to pay the loan back.
  • Minors (child under 18 years or age) may also be covered for the flights in the form of a grant, which does not have to be paid back.
  • Payment plans are available.

We encourage you to apply. Once approved, the Canberra Travel Team will book you a seat on the next available airlines, utilising all airlines and destinations available to get you back to Australia.

Please note that the Australian Embassy does not assess or decide on loan applications. For more information, eligibility criteria and to apply, see COVID-19 overseas financial assistance. Email the Canberra Team if you have any questions about the application process [email protected].

 

3.2 Seeking other financial assistance

If you do not meet the requirements of COVID-19 overseas financial assistanceyou should seek help from family, friends, previous employers, financial institutions or any social/sporting/religious organisations you’re a part of.

Services Australia (formerly Department of Human Services) for advice regarding your Centrelink payment. You can call 1800 1611 0046 (toll free) from Philippines. 

Department of Treasury has announced measures for people seeking to access their superannuation.

Australian Tax Office (ATO) (COVID 19 Early Release Super Scheme Section (ph: (+61) 13 10 20 option 5 then 2)) also has advice about accessing your super.

Moneysmart has reliable information to help you come to a decision and understand your options.

 

4.Hotel quarantine in Australia

When you arrive in Australia, you must quarantine for 14 days at designated facilities in your port of arrival – unless you have an exemption. Vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative COVID-19 test prior to boarding your flight does not change the quarantine requirement at this time.

The quarantine requirements are managed and enforced by state and territory governments with Australian Government support. You may have to contribute to the cost of quarantine. You will be presented with an invoice on departure from hotel quarantine.

Quarantine is an unfamiliar experience for most people and can be challenging. The Department of Health website provides a guide on getting ready for quarantine, including what to expect, what to do before you depart and how to manage your time in quarantine.

The following website provide further information:

Re-entry and quarantine | Smartraveller

Travel restrictions | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au) and

Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for international travellers | Australian Government Department of Health.

 

4.1 Seeking an exemption from hotel quarantine fees

There are different rules in place for each state and territory.

You may be able to seek a waiver of quarantine fees if you can demonstrate that you had already purchased a flight to return to Australia prior to the caps on arrivals being implemented, or if you can demonstrate that you experiencing financial or other hardship.

See 4.2 below for links to relevant state information. 

 

4.2 State and territory government’s guidelines and exemptions

For further information on quarantine and health how to seek quarantine and fee exemptions, see:

5.Current developments in the Philippines

The Philippines has implemented a range of quarantine measures and other restrictions to limit the spread of COVID-19 throughout the Philippines, which change regularly. These measures are different in each province and barangay. 

You should follow the Philippine Department of Tourism for the latest advice.  If you require assistance with transport, food, accommodation and medication, they may be able to provide some assistance.

For detailed advice, you can also refer to the Inter-Agency Task Force for the resolutions outlining the current quarantine levels and other specific restrictions. The Philippine Covid-19 website details what these levels mean for you.

You should ensure you understand the requirements and restrictions where you are staying. You must wear a face mask and shield outside your accommodation. 

 

6.Health concerns

6.1 Mental health

We understand that these travel restrictions and isolation is an especially difficult time for everyone’s health and wellbeing. If you feel you might need some additional support, see the following websites now offering various ways to get in contact including SMS, email and online chat: 

Should you wish to speak to these counselling services, please contact the Australian Embassy 24-hours to have your call facilitated.

 

6.2 COVID health advice

To minimise the risk of contracting the virus, you should limit non-essential movement, purchase essential supplies, wear personal protective equipment (PPE), exercise good hygiene and practice social distancing. Follow the advice of local authorities.

For medical assistance, please visit either a hospital or health centre. Visit the DOH Hospitals | Department of Health website for a full list of hospitals.

 

6.3 COVID testing facilities

To obtain a COVID-19 test, please visit the Licensed COVID-19 Testing Laboratories in the Philippines | Department of Health website (doh.gov.ph) for a list of accredited testing laboratories in the Philippines.

 

6.4 COVID vaccine for Australians in the Philippines

Australia’s COVID-19 vaccinations will be rolled out domestically to people in Australia. At this stage there are no plans to vaccinate Australians overseas.

Australians in the Philippines, with legal residency status,  are encouraged to follow the Philippine Government’s National Deployment and Vaccination Plan for COVID-19 vaccines, which like Australia, is being developed and will target priority groups in the first instance. 

The Philippines Department of Health has published Frequently Asked Questions about the COVID-19 vaccines in the Philippines. As further information is available about the Philippine vaccine programme, this page will be updated.

 

6.5 Medication concerns

Should you have concerns about your medication running low or not being able to replenish your prescription, you should seek local medical advice regarding alternative options and consult with your doctor. The Australian Embassy cannot obtain medication for you.

Your accommodation or friends may be able to provide you with advice regarding your nearest hospital, medical centre, or pharmacy. Some online pharmacies are delivering. Alternatively see above (6.2) for a list of hospitals.

 

7.Australian visas (Department of Home Affairs)

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade does not handle or process visa and citizenship applications. Please contact the Department of Home Affairs. Visa information can be found Explore visa options (homeaffairs.gov.au).

Only Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens (who are usually residents of Australia) and their immediate family members may travel to Australia at this time. All visa holders should confirm if they can travel to Australia and if required will need to apply for a travel exemption. For more information on these restrictions please visit the following website:

Immediate family of Australian citizens or permanent residents or New Zealand citizens usually resident in Australia | COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au)

Home Affairs is prioritising processing visa applications for those travellers in the exempt categories to support urgent travel. 

Home Affairs encourages applicants to apply online wherever possible, as those applications will be processed faster than those lodged on paper.

 

7.1 Requests for visitor visas to be extended as a result of COVID-19

Under Australian migration law, it is not possible to extend a visitor visa or electronic travel authority. You must apply for a new visa, if your current visa has expired and you wish to travel to Australia.

 

7.2 Partner, child, adoption or other family residence visa application

If you have lodged a partner, child, adoption or other family residence visa application: Your visa application remains under assessment, however as the Australian Embassy is currently operating with essential staff only, your visa application has been transferred to another visa processing office within Australia for active management and continued assessment of your case.

For any Partner visa related matters (including existing applications) please contact [email protected]

 

7.3 Child visa related matters (including existing applications)

Please contact [email protected]

Note: From 1 April 2020, Child Visa applications (except the dependent child subclass 445) must be couriered directly to the Child and Other Family Processing Centre in Perth (please refer to the Department of Home Affairs website). Any applications submitted to the Australian Embassy will be considered invalid.

Please submit any supporting documentation online via your ImmiAccount (if possible) or to the email addresses provided above. Your email will not be forwarded. 

 

8.Philippines visas

The Philippines has temporarily restricted entry to foreigners. You must have an approved visa as well as an exemption or you will be refused entry.  The travel ban does not affect Filipino citizens. 

Ensure your visa is up to date at all time. Failure to do so may result in overstay fees and fine or detention and lengthy deportation process.

For the latest advisories see the Bureau of Immigration Philippines website.

Below provides some general guidance on the most common enquires received by the Australia embassy. However, you should contact the Bureau of Immigration Philippines directly for advice. Their website lists phone numbers and their facebook account as well as a list of Other Offices | Bureau of Immigration should you need to visit in person.

 

8.1 To renew your visa

To renew your visa, please contact the Bureau of Immigration Philippines directly for advice and to make an appointment to correct any outstanding visa issues. You must wear a facemask and exercise social distancing during your visit to an immigration office.

 

8.2 Overstaying your visa

Foreigners who overstayed for less than six months can still pay their visa overstay fees at the airport. 

For foreign nationals who have overstayed for more than 6 months, the process is as follows:

  • apply for visa extension at nearest BI satellite office,
  • all applications for visa extension are referred to BI Manila; process can take more than a month,
  • visa fees and penalties must be paid,
  • exit clearance certificate (ECC) is required.

For foreign nationals who have overstayed for 3 year or more (see 8.2 for more details):

  • apply for visa extension at nearest BI satellite office,
  • all applications for visa extension are referred to BI Manila; process can take 2 to 3 months or more,
  • visa fees and penalties must be paid,
  • exit clearance certificate (ECC) is required,
  • you will be issued with “order to leave” and is given a timeframe to depart the Philippines.

 

8.3 To apply for an Emigration Exit Clearance (EEC)

If you have been in the Philippines for more than six months or have overstayed your visa prior to the lockdown you may need an Emigration Exit Clearance (EEC) and should contact the Bureau of Immigration in advance of departing.

You will need visit an immigration office in person to undertake biometrics.

 

8.4 Seeking a further extension of your 3-year tourist visa

Given the current COVID-19 situation, the Bureau of Immigration (BI) may consider a further extension after staying in the Philippines for 3 years.

You must write to the BI Commissioner explaining why you are unable to depart the Philippines and requesting further visa extension; you must attend the BI office to submit the request, along with other supporting documentation as follows:

 (a) Original passport and photocopy of biopage of the passport

 (b) Photocopy of latest extension if any, and latest arrival

 (c) CGAF (application form) properly accomplished (https://immigration.gov.ph/51-forms)

 (d) Affidavit duly notarized as to why he/she overstayed

 (e) 2 x 2 picture

 (f) Address in the Philippines and abroad

 (g) Civil status

Client must book an appointment online to submit the request (http://immigration.gov.ph/)

 

9.Travelling to the Philippines

The Philippines remains a ‘Do not Travel’ zone. Philippines Travel Advice & Safety | Smartraveller 

There is a ban on overseas travel from Australia. If you’re an Australian citizen or permanent resident, you can’t leave Australia unless you get an exemption to travel or you’re travelling to a destination that’s exempt from the ban. Foreign citizens are able to depart Australia at any time.

 

9.1 Travel exemptions to depart Australia

The Department of Home Affairs looks after the travel ban. Visit their page on Leaving Australia for further information, including details on exemptions to the ban and exemption restrictions for high risk countries.

 

9.2 Philippine visas and entry

The Philippines has temporarily restricted entry to foreigners. You must have an approved visa and travel exemption or you will be refused entry. If you don't meet the conditions, the Australian Government can't help you. See the following links for the latest information:

Advisory | Bureau of Immigration Philippines

Advisory | Philippine Embassy of Canberra Australia (philembassy.org.au)

9.3 Approval to travel to the Philippines – arrival procedures

On arrival in the Philippines you'll need to complete a ‘Case Investigation form’, undergo COVID-19 rapid testing (RT-PCR) and quarantine in a Bureau of Quarantine accredited quarantine hotel while test results are confirmed.

You'll need to cover the cost of your test and your stay at the hotel. Ensure you have evidence of your hotel booking.

For a list of Bureau of Quarantine accredited quarantine hotels to book direct see the following links:

Facilities inspected as of May 13, 2021 (Updated) | Bureau of Quarantine (doh.gov.ph)

News and Events | Bureau of Quarantine (doh.gov.ph) for further updated lists.

 

10.The Australian Embassy 

The Australian Embassy will continue to work to support Australians that remain in the Philippines in line with the Consular Services Charter to the best of our ability. However, given the current restrictions in the Philippines our ability to provide consular assistance may be limited.

 

10.1 Self-register your details with the Embassy 

If you have not already registered your details with the Australian Embassy please self-register using this link. This registry is only to contact Australians to advise about upcoming commercial flight information as they may become available or other important updates about returning to Australia.

Please be sure to update your registration if any of your circumstances change. 

Should you have trouble accessing your registration please email [email protected] and the team in Canberra will assist you further.

 

10.2 Travel advice

As always, we continue to encourage you to read our Philippines travel advice on Smartraveller and subscribe for updatesAlso follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Refer also to the Smartraveller advice on COVID-19: Trying to get home | Smartraveller.

 

10.3 Passport and Notarial services

We continue to accept passport applications and undertake notarial services. We are utilising courier services and skype interviews more and are limiting in-person services at this time. This is to ensure we can still provide you with a service, but follow Australian and Philippine health guidelines as well as adhere to necessary quarantine measures.

Please email your enquiry to [email protected]. We will assess each situation and will contact you directly to make arrangements if you require urgent services. Please see further below for more information.

 

10.3.1 Passport services

We will work with you regarding your specific circumstances and can assist you from a remote location. We are open for passports appointments on a Tuesday and Thursday. Appointments must be booked online.

Before booking an appointment, please read the relevant information and ensure you have all the requirements. We cannot proceed with your application if you do not bring the correct documentation.

You may currently apply for the following passports:

  • Full Validity Passport (FVP) – which is valid for 10 years for an adult and 5 years for a child
    • an in-person appointment (face-to-face interview) and application is necessary
    • it takes 21 workings days for processing, not including local courier services.
  • Limited Validity Passport (LVP) – which is initially valid for 1 year. 9 years validity can be added to your passport after a year with no further costs upon presentation of cardinal documents and face-to-face interview.
    • an application can be couriered and a skype interview is required
    • it takes 21 working days for processing, not including local courier services.
  • Emergency Passport (EY) – can be issued if a passport has been lost or stolen or for urgent travel. Which is valid for 7 months and ahs 4 visa pages
    • a n application can be couriered and a skype interview is required
    • it takes 2 to 3 working days to process following a completed application and after receipt/payment of the application.

Please refer to the Australian Passports Office website for further information about the process for lodging passport applications and passport renewals as well as details of the supporting documentation required.

Further information about passport services and to make an appointment, see our website.

 

10.3.2 Notarial services

We are open for notarial appointments on a Wednesday. Appointments must be booked online.

In-person appointments (other than Certificates of No Impediment to Marriage) can be made for the following services:

  • Witnessing of documents
  • Authentications and
  • Apostilles

Before booking an appointment, please read the relevant information and ensure you have all the requirements as we cannot proceed with your appointment if you do not bring the correct documentation.

Certificate of No Impediment to Marriage (CNI) applications are accepted only by mail or email at this time. Please send your CNI applications to:

Consular Section
Australian Embassy
Level 23, Tower 2, RCBC Plaza 6819 Ayala Avenue
Makati City 1200, Metro Manila, The Philippines

[email protected]

Further information about notarial services and to make an appointment, see our website.

 

10.4 Urgent consular assistance

If you need urgent consular assistance, call our 24-hour consular emergency call centre to speak to one of our consular officers in Canberra on +61 2 6261 3305.

 Alternatively you can email us during business hours on [email protected].

 

11.Useful links

Australia: COVID-19 | Smartraveller

Australia: COVID-19: Trying to get home | Smartraveller

Australia: COVID-19 and the border (homeaffairs.gov.au)

Australia: Coronavirus (COVID-19) health alert | Australian Department of Health

Australia: Coronavirus (COVID-19) advice for international travellers | Australian Department of Health

 

Philippine: Department of Health (doh.gov.ph)

Philippine: Department of Foreign Affairs | dfa.gov.ph/covid-19-advisories

Philippine: Bureau of Immigration  

Philippine: Embassy of Canberra Australia (philembassy.org.au)

 

World Health Organisation: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) (who.int)

 

 

 

Previous Updates

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 7 July 2020

 

 

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 28 May 2020

 

With some quarantine conditions easing, commercial flight options are likely to increase. We understand there are currently flights from Manila with Qatar Airways, ANA and Asiana to Australia via Qatar, Japan and South Korea. Transits options through Singapore and Hong Kong are likely in the near future.

 

In these uncertain times, flight schedules are subject to change with little notice and you should seek confirmation with your airline directly. If unable to book online, we recommend calling the airline. The Embassy is unable to assist with the booking of commercial flights.

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 19 May 2020

 

 

There will be a special user-pays flight via Philippine Airlines (PAL) to Sydney and Melbourne on Tuesday, 26 May. PAL will also to run sweeper flights from the following locations: Bacolod, Cagayan de Oro, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Legazpi, Tacloban and Tagbilaran.

 

These flights are for Australian citizens, permanent residents, New Zealand citizens (who are usually residents of Australia) and their immediate family members (spouse, de-facto spouse and children).

PAL will call those who register for flights to complete their bookings. Australian citizens may also call PAL directly on +63 2 8855 1000 or book at a PAL ticket office.

 

Register your interest directly with PAL via the following link until 11:59 pm on Tuesday, 19 May: https://mypal.vip/url/AUSrepat

 

If you have previously registered, you will need to register again. Please ensure you enter your details carefully. PAL had difficulty reaching some of those who registered for the previous flights – their telephone numbers were either incomplete or unattended. This caused some to miss the opportunity.

 

All flight arrangements will be made by PAL when there are a sufficient number of passengers. Please be patient as this may take some time. PAL may call you from an unknown number. You need to ensure you have phone coverage and your battery is charged. If you are unsure about taking the flight or the destination, PAL may not call back as seat may fill up.

 

For Australian citizens with a valid Australian passport (only) who register for the flights, you may call PAL on +63 2 88551000 from Sunday 17 May to complete your booking. Phone lines will be open from 8am until 8pm each day.

 

You will need to make payment at the time of the call. Fare cost does not include additional taxes.

April 2020 Updates

 Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 27 April 2020
 

 

 Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 24 April 2020

 

Philippine Airlines will run user-pays Manila to Sydney and Manila -Melbourne flights on Tuesday, 28th April. Sweeper flights to connect people in to Cebu, Davao, Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo, Dumaguete, Tacloban and Bohol will also run on Tuesday 28th.

 

These are for people who have already registered with PAL through the link previously shared by the Embassy. Due to high numbers we are not able to accept new registrations.

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 22 April 2020

 

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 17 April 2020

 

 

 

The Australian Embassy has partnered with Philippine Airlines for dedicated user pays flights to Melbourne on the evening of Saturday, 18 April 2020.  Flights are for Australian citizens, permanent residents and their immediate families.

This includes sweeper flights to Manila from Bacolod, Cagayan de Oro, Caticlan, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo City, Puerto Princesa, Siargao, Tacloban and Tagbilaran (Bohol). Sweeper flights will transit through either Cebu or Davao then on to Manila.

 

REGISTER FOR THESE FLIGHTS

 

Register for the flight with Philippines Airlines by evening of Wednesday, 15 April, click on the following link. 

 

https://mypal.vip/url/AuMelRepatFlight     

 

A Philippine Airlines representative will then contact you to arrange payment and confirm your seat.  Manila to Melbourne or Sydney economy tickets are approximately USD 625. Economy tickets from regional centres to Melbourne or Sydney are about USD 775 – you cannot terminate your journey in Manila.  

 

All flight arrangements will be made by Philippine Airlines, not by the Embassy. The airline will contact you to arrange payment and ticketing after you have registered for the flights. Please be patient as this will take some time.

 

Any flight related enquiries which include future or cancelled Philippine Airlines flight bookings need to be discussed with the airline.  

 

These flights will probably be the best option for you to return to Australia and for many the only option for the foreseeable future. If you choose to purchase a ticket on one of these flights you need to make arrangements for your transport to the airport that you will depart from.  The Australian Embassy is working with the relevant provincial and local authorities to ensure movement through checkpoints.  You will need to carry a hardcopy of your ticket to get through any checkpoints – an e-copy may not be enough.

 

We appreciate these flights cannot reach everyone but we have worked hard to get flights to as many locations as possible.  We are still working on alternatives for those who cannot reach these flights. 

 

TRANSPORTATION AND VISA EXTENSION

 

If you choose to purchase a ticket on one of these flights you need to make arrangements for your transport to the airport that you will depart from.

The Australian Embassy is working with the relevant provincial and local authorities to ensure movement through checkpoints and will provide an Embassy letter for you to show to Philippine authorities to facilitate your movement. You will need to carry a hardcopy of your ticket to get through any checkpoints – an e-copy may not be enough.

The Bureau of Immigration will be available at the terminal in Manila (NAIA) to resolve any visa issues.

Please note if you have overstayed your visa prior to the lockdown you should contact the Bureau of Immigration in advance as these issues may not be able to be resolved at the airport. Contact their offices: http://www.immigration.gov.ph/contact-us/other-immigration-offices

 

IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS

 

If you wish to be accompanied by an immediate family member who is not a permanent resident or Australian citizen, and does not currently hold a valid visa, they will need to apply as soon as possible. Once they have applied they will need to email the [email protected] mailbox with the Subject ‘URGENT Visa Application – PAL Repatriation flight’.  Once the visa has been granted, an exemption to Australia’s travel ban will need to be sought.  To do this please visit https://covid19.homeaffairs.gov.au/coming-australia and complete the online request form.  We cannot guarantee a visa will be issued in time for these flights.
 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOUR FLIGHT TO AUSTRALIA

 

Personal Protective Equipment:

You will be required to supply your own mask to be worn during the flights.


Mandatory 14-day quarantine in Australia:

Once you arrive, you will be required to undertake a mandatory 14-day quarantine at designated facilities (for example, a hotel), in your port of arrival. Travellers will be transported directly to designated facilities after appropriate immigration, customs and enhanced health checks. Read more: https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/COVID-19-australian-travellers#returning

Onward travel following quarantine:

The repatriation flights are only available to Melbourne. You will be required after you mandatory quarantine period to make you own arrangements to your end destination

 

We appreciate that many of you have advised us where you are staying and provided contact details.  We ask that you please let us know your current location, details of where you are staying, and who you are travelling with.  If you have not done so already, please also provide us with your passport details, an email address and a contactable phone number. Our email is [email protected].

 

As always we continue to encourage you to read our advice on Smartraveller and subscribe for updates to the Philippines travel advice

 

We remain committed to helping you get through the coming weeks.

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 15 April 2020

 

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 13 April 2020
 

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 6 April 2020

 

 

March 2020 Updates

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 30 March 2020

 

 

Message from Ambassador Steven J. Robinson AO, 26 March 2020

 

 

Novel Coronavirus

13 March 2020 - Following the Prime Minister's press announcement, we now advise all Australians to reconsider their need for overseas travel.  The travel advice for the Philippines has been update to the reflect this.

 

All international arrivals to Australia, including Australian citizens, permanent residents and their immediate family are required to self-isolate for 14 days. See Home Affairs for further information. https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/news-media/current-alerts/novel-coronavirus

 

The Philippine government has implemented enhanced community quarantine for Luzon Island including Metro Manila until 13 April 2020.  Other city governments around the Philippines are implementing similar restrictions.  You should book travel immediately if you wish to leave the Philippines. Contact your airline, travel providers or visit the airport to  organise onward travel from Manila, Clark or Cebu back to Australia.

 

On 19 March, The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) announced that it is temporarily suspending visa issuance for new arrivals until further notice. This has no impact on Australians who are already in the country.

 

There are no domestic or connecting flights to and from Metro Manila. As of 20 March, the Department of Tourism is organising transportation for foreign nationals to reach Clark or Manila airports.   Please contact the DoT Facebook Page via Messenger to seek seats on these flights. 

 

Strict home quarantine is being observed and only essential movement is permitted. You should carry evidence of your purpose of travel. There is an increased presence of law enforcement.

 

We continue to advise that you to make the necessary preparations for the enhanced quarantine period.  This includes sourcing accommodation and restricting your movements in order to comply with self-quarantine requirements.  Further, non-essential movement and gathering in groups may expose you to COVID-19.  Some local authorities have put curfews in place.  Supermarkets and pharmacies are still open.  You should ensure you have enough food, drinking water, and required medicines.  

 
Travel advice
As always, we continue to encourage you to read our Philippines travel advice on Smartraveller and subscribe for updates. Also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
 
COVID health advice
To minimise the risk of contracting the virus, you should limit non-essential movement, purchase essential supplies, wear PPE, exercise good hygiene and practice social distancing.
 
For medical assistance, please visit either a hospital or health centre.  Visit the Department of Health’s website for a full list of hospitals: https://www.doh.gov.ph/doh-hospitals-directory
 
 

Useful Links:

 

Department of Health, the Philippines: https://www.doh.gov.ph/

Press releases: https://www.doh.gov.ph/press-releases

Coronavirus (COVID-19): https://www.doh.gov.ph/2019-nCov

 

Department of Health, Australia: https://www.health.gov.au/

Coronavirus: https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus−2019-ncov

 

Smartraveller

https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/news-and-updates/coronavirus-covid-19

https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/destinations/asia/philippines

 

Australian Embassy: Twitter: @AusAmbPH, Instagram: @AusEmbPH, Facebook: Australia in the Philippines

 

World Health Organisation: https://www.who.int/

Coronavirus (COVID-19): https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

Attending the Australian Embassy

The Embassy will adapt its operations to focus on essential activities from 16 March 2020 until further notice. We will continue to deliver prioritised consular services.   Australians requiring emergency assistance please call 02 7757 8100 and follow the prompts or 1300 555135 from Australia.

During the enhanced quarantine period the Australian Embassy will be offering limited services.  We will assess each client and their situation.

If you’re visiting the Australian Embassy, please be aware of the advisory from the  RCBC Plaza Property Management Office on health screening.   

 

February 2020 Update

Travel restrictions - Australia

As a temporary measure, all travellers arriving in Australia from any part of mainland China, will be subject to enhanced border control measures. Australia will deny entry to anyone who has left or transited mainland China from 1 February, with the exception of: Australian citizens, permanent residents, and immediate family members of Australian citizens and permanent residents including spouses, minor dependents and legal guardians. All other foreign nationals who were in mainland China on or after 1 February will not be allowed to enter Australia until 14 days after they have left, or transited through, mainland China.

For more information: visit the website of the Australian Department of Home Affairs and Novel coronavirus and Australian visas.