More than a year and a half since the Philippine port operations’ (land, sea and air) have been restricted and with the hope that international borders would soon open to select travelers and nationalities of different nations, it is but proper that we prepare early and decide when our luggage and backpacks would be put in use in the near future. 

For purposes of travel and leisure in international terms, here is a rundown of what Filipinos shall prepare prior to departure, when one’s health condition and resources permit:

1.      Ensure Passports are valid. 

Visit the Online Passport Application System frequently when passport validity dates are nearing six (6) months before expiration.  Nowadays, obtaining a scheduled online appointment thru the online portal of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), both for new and renewal applications, have become elusive.   

As travel itineraries are on halt and that passports could not be used anyway, it is best to file for the application at the soonest possible time.  

2.     Be vaccinated.  Schedule and secure your World Health Organization (WHO) International Certificate of Vaccination (Yellow Card) from the Bureau of Quarantine.


Authorities declare that vaccination is not mandatory.  However, this comes with the caveat that the government highly encourages the public to get vaccinated and be protected against covid-19.  While the tenor for vaccination may not be that imposing, it is nevertheless required on some countries for entry.  For a hassle-free travel, the best plan is to be vaccinated and obtain the needed certifications as proof, and for presentation at the Bureau of Immigration on varied international control borders.

3.     Watch travel vlogs and read travel blogs to plan for long-term itineraries.


Gone are the days for weekend or short-term international travels.  With the high cost of mandatory RT-PCR covid tests and availment of quarantine facilities at your own expense once you return to the country, it would be practical to fully utilize the opportunity of being able to travel for leisure.


Itineraries now should be detailed which comes with confirmed accommodations.  Coming unannounced to reception areas of hostels are no longer possible these days.  Thus, the need for a thorough planning on intended long-term travels.



4.     Get acquainted with card and mind video games online


Boredom and stress should be the least of concern on these times of a public health global crisis.  And one way to entertain ourselves for long-haul flights and even on moments of lounging is to keep busy with our mobile phones in hand.


Prior to intended flights, we should at least be acquainted for online games within our reach and for immediate control.


Social media platforms could be toxic at times and it would be best to have ready access to online card and mind video games as a means of recreation.  One particular readily available online game website that piqued my interest is the solitaire games, with certain varieties being offered for free and not only solitaire per se, it includes a fun collection of online games divided into categories.


5.     Coordinate with airline companies for the specific requirements and travel documentations mandated for both departure and arrival. 


Regardless of destination, prepare for the following prior to the flight:

a.     Valid passport

b.     Vaccine card and/or BOQ Yellow Card

c.     Travel Insurance with certification on covid-19 coverage

d.     Negative pre-departure test result for covid-19 collected during the 3 calendar days preceding the flight’s departure

e.     Confirmed hotel bookings/accommodations

f.      Confirmed flight itineraries


6.     Chill, sit back and relax for the next travel dates.

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