The beautiful island of Boracay will be reopening for a “test run” on October 26, 2018, six months after it was closed down for partial rehabilitation. Here are some fast facts you should know about the “new” Boracay:
- The October 26 reopening of the island is a “soft opening” and officials of the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force ask the public to “manage expectations” for the first phase of the rehabilitation of the island. The goal is to completely rehabilitate Boracay by December 2019.
- Tourists are now required to present their hotel booking when they get to the island. The Philippine Star reports that, Niven Maquirang, Caticlan-Cagbang, Jetty Port manager stressed that a “no booking, no entry” policy will be implemented on the island. A verification booth will be set up in both Caticlan and Kalibo airports where officials will check the hotel bookings of tourists and make sure that they booked with accredited hotels.
- Speaking of hotels, the Department of Tourism has released a list of the 157 hotels that were allowed to be reopened. These hotels are those that have successfully acquired the required permits to operate on the island. This also means that there are less rooms available to accommodate tourists on the island—7,308 rooms, to be exact. Check out the list here.
- Those fun water sports activities that were easily available around the island? It might take some time before you could enjoy them again. Department of Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu announced that regular water sports activities will resume on the island in December.
- Smoking and drinking will not be allowed in public places. You’re still free to drink or smoke in the confines of resorts, however!
- The number of flights to Boracay will now be limited, after the Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force appealed to airlines to help with making sure that the island doesn't get overpopulated. Department Of Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat shared that the island can only carry 19,215 people at a time or 6,405 tourists a day. The DENR commissioned scientists from UP Los Banos to asses the island’s carrying capacity.
- Just a few hours after the dry run of the soft-opening of Boracay, a Facebook album went viral showing trash thrown on the beach. Netizens are arguing in the comments section, however, that the photos are staged.
- To keep Boracay's beaches clean, Cebu Pacific has donated trash bins with information on how to properly discard garbage: