Traveling domestically? You can get a free RT-PCR test—here’s how

File photo of a swab test kit. Photo: Pixabay
File photo of a swab test kit. Photo: Pixabay

The Department of Tourism has been ramping up a local tourism revival, and as COVID-19 restrictions continue to ease, here’s some good news: you can get an RT-PCR test for free if you are traveling locally.

The Tourism Promotions Board is offering fully subsidized RT-PCR tests for qualified domestic tourists. Up to 350 tourists each day can receive the free RT-PCR tests at the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC) in Diliman, Quezon City, the board announced on social media.

Tourists must apply for the free RT-PCR test at least five days before their intended travel date. They may register online at the Tourism Promotions Board website and indicate their travel destination there. Multiple registrations are discouraged.

Applicants must provide the following documents online:

  • Copy of any two (2) of the following government-issued IDs (Driver’s License, Passport, PRC License, PhilPost ID, UMID, SSS, Voter’s ID, TIN ID, PhilHealth ID, PWD ID, Senior Citizen ID). In the absence of the above, any of the following secondary IDs (police clearance, NBI clearance, Pag-ibig ID and the like) can be submitted subject to approval of the evaluation team.
  • For Minors (1- 17 years old), a Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) birth certificate, passport or school ID would suffice.
  • Copy of confirmed accommodation booking with a DOT-accredited and open establishment for leisure and staycation
  • Copy of roundtrip transportation tickets, if applicable, bearing name and booking reference number
  • If using a private vehicle, attach a copy of Official Receipt/Certificate of Registration (OR/CR) and photo of vehicle with plate number

Approved applicants will be notified by the PCMC COVID-19 testing laboratory via email, including the swab schedule and a Client Investigation Form which must be printed and filled out. Applicants must be present at the testing site on their confirmed swab schedule.

The RT-PCR test result will be e-mailed directly. Tourists swabbed in the morning will receive their test results the next day between 4 to 6 p.m., while those swabbed in the afternoon will receive their results the day after between 6 to 8 p.m.

The subsidized swab tests will run until December 31, 2021 only or until funds for this purpose is utilized. 

READ: Fully vaxxed? Skip the swab test when visiting these destinations

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