GCQ June 2021: COVID-19 Restrictions in Manila—Curfew, Dining, Travel, And More
Despite being deemed as a "high-to-moderate-risk area" for COVID-19, people in Metro Manila will experience a more relaxed general community quarantine (GCQ) starting 1 June 2021 as the national government eased restrictions on travel, dining, and curfew.
It can be recalled that in the past few months, the greater Manila area was placed under stricter enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) and modified enhanced community quarantine (MECQ) following a spike in the number of COVID-19 infections.
In this article, Tatler gives you an update on the number of cases, restrictions, and safety protocols you need to follow so you can dodge the threats of the deadly virus.
What are the quarantine levels in different parts of the country?
To allow more nonessential businesses to resume their operations, the Inter-Agency Task Force Against Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF) recommended more lax quarantine measures in the National Capital Region (NCR) and its neighbouring regions.
Starting 1 until 15 June 2021, the following areas will be under GCQ "with restrictions" for 15 days:
- Metro Manila
The following areas are under GCQ from 1 June to 30
- Baguio City
- Mountain Province
- Nueva Vizcaya
- Iligan City
- Davao City
- Lanao del Sur
- Cotabato City
Meanwhile, the following places will be under MECQ to address the increasing number of COVID-19 cases:
- Santiago City
- Puerto Princesa
- Iloilo City
- Cagayan de Oro City
- Zamboanga City
- Zamboanga Sibugay
- Zamboanga del Sur
- Zamboanga del Norte
- Butuan City
- Agusan del Sur
The rest of the country is under modified GCQ (MGCQ) for the entire month of June.
HAVE THE CASES DIPPED?
The Department of Health (DOH) has recorded more than 7,000 COVID-19 infections from Friday, 28 May until Sunday 30 May. The agency so far tallied 23,249 new cases over the weekend bringing the country's total to 1,223,627. Of the total cases, 53,757 or 4.4 per cent are active.
DOH also raised the country's death toll to 20,860 after it reported deaths that exceeded 100 in the past five days.
Meanwhile, there were already 1,149,010 patients who recovered from the virus.
WILL THERE BE CURFEWS UNDER GCQ?
Mayors in Metro Manila agreed to retain the 10pm to 4am curfew in the area indefinitely. According to Metropolitan Manila Development Authority Chairperson Benhur Abalos, the region seeks to keep things the way they presently are to help reduce the number of cases in the coming days.
"It is the status quo for now, we would not change curfew hours," Abalos said in a Malacañang briefing.
Currently, only authorized persons outside residence (APOR) in the National Capital Region (NCR) are allowed to leave their homes.
HOW IS PH VACCINATION GOING?
The Philippines' first batch of COVID-19 vaccines arrived on 28 February. The vaccines—600,000 doses of Sinovac's CoronaVac—was handed to the country by China as “a donation”.
As of 1 May 2021, the country has already received 4,040,600 doses of vaccines. Of these numbers, 3,500,000 are Sinovac, 525,600 are Astrazeneca, while 15,000 are Sputnik V vaccines.
More vaccines from the United States are also set to arrive in the Philippines by June according to Philippine Ambassador to the US Jose Manuel "Babe" Romualdez. In an interview, he said that the country may be given around 2 million doses of AstraZeneca, apart from the 2.2 million Pfizer vaccines which were promised to arrive by the end of May.
As of this writing, the total doses administered to the Filipinos reached 1,809,801. In this figure, 1,562,815 have been given as first doses, while 246,986 as second doses.
In a country with an estimated 111,046,913 residents, the individuals who received the first dose only constitute 1.44 per cent of the country’s population. Meanwhile, those who were given the second dose represent 0.23 per cent.
IS DINING ALLOWED UNDER GCQ?
Restaurants are allowed to provide indoor dine-in services at 20 per cent venue or seating capacity. Outdoor dining or alfresco is also allowed at 50 per cent capacity.
ARE NON-ESSENTIAL BUSINESSES OPEN?
Yes, establishments that offer personal care services that do not require removal of face masks (e.g.: parlours, beauty clinics, salons,etc.) can operate at 30 per cent capacity.
However, the following establishments are still required to cease their operations under GCQ:
- entertainment venues, such as bars, concert halls, theatres, etc;
- recreational venues, such as internet cafes, billiards halls, arcades, etc;
- amusement parks, fairs, playgrounds, kiddie rides;
- indoor sports courts and venues and indoor tourist attractions;
- venues for meetings, conferences, exhibitions
CAN I TRAVEL AMID GCQ?
People residing in Metro Manila can visit nearby provinces under modified general community quarantine (MGCQ); this was announced by Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat in a media briefing on 1 June 2021, Tuesday. "Interzonal travel is allowed but it is limited to point-to-point trips. There is no age restriction, but the testing-before-travel requirement is there," she said.
All travelers must provide a COVID-19 test result before their trip. Some of the requirements are subject to restrictions of their destination.
WHO CAN CONVENE UNDER GCQ?
Necrological services, wakes, inurnment, funerals, and religious gatherings for those who died of causes but COVID-19 in Metro Manila are allowed to convene using only 10 per cent of the venue capacity.
Individuals aged 18 to 65 are also allowed to leave their places of residence in GCQ areas.
*The information in this article are subject to change, please refresh the page from time to time.