79 foreigners stranded due to COVID-19 leave Negros Occidental to go back home
BACOLOD CITY –– At least 79 foreigners who were stranded in Negros Occidental due to travel restrictions caused by COVID-19 were able to board a plane to Manila on Friday on their way home to their respective countries.
Jennylind Cordero, acting provincial tourism officer, said the special flight, arranged by the Korean Embassy, was set to have 84 passengers but the Department of Foreign Affairs reported that only 79 boarded the plane.
Of the 84 passengers, 55 were Koreans, eight Taiwanese, nine Singaporeans, and 12 Japanese.
Five Singaporeans, however, did not board the plane.
The Korean Embassy paid for the fare of the Koreans, while the other foreigners paid for their fare.
Cordero said 107 foreign nationals remained stranded in different towns and cities of Negros Occidental, plus the five who were unable to leave on Friday.
The Department of Tourism, in a recent advisory, announced it was no longer staging flights for stranded tourists.
However, Cordero said some airlines are staging commercial flights, or some groups doing private charters to move stranded tourists to international gateways. Tourists contacted their embassies for such arrangements.
The Negros Occidental Tourism Division is monitoring the accommodations of stranded tourists, working closely with local governments, and coordinating with the DOT online, she said.
Domestic and international tourists not yet listed may coordinate with city and municipal tourism personnel offices. They may also call 433-2515 or send an email to [email protected], Cordero said.
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