[UPDATE] 72 hour-deadline to fly out of Luzon lifted

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Karlo Nograles, spokesman of the task force on the enhanced community quarantine

The government has lifted the 72-hour deadline for outbound travelers, allowing all those departing from international airports to leave anytime from Luzon within the almost month-long community enhanced quarantine.

Filipino tourists will still not be allowed to go, however.

But all overseas Filipino workers, permanent resident visa holders and students can fly to Hong Kong from international airports while the enhanced community quarantine is in place until April 13.

Prior to this, the Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) said on March 17 that they have resolved to allow Filipinos to proceed with their international flights and leave Luzon within 72 hours, a departure from the guideline that only foreigners will be permitted to leave after Luzon was placed under an enhanced community quarantine  from March 17 to April 13.

“This is to inform everyone that during the IATF meeting held today, 17 March 2020, it was decided that all passengers, regardless of nationality, may depart from the country within the 72-hour period, unless their flights have been cancelled by the airlines or the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB),” the Department of Transportation said.

Since there is a travel ban to Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China, only those exempted from it can go, however. This includes OFWs, who were allowed to fly to Hong Kong again on Feb.18, more than two weeks after the travel ban was set in place on Feb.2.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte announced the imposition of the enhanced community quarantine – which expanded the area of coverage from Metro Manila to the whole region of Luzon – on March 16 to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.

There are at least 187 cases of COVID-19 infection in the Philippines, with 14 deaths.