Local airlines, which are desperately in need of a travel demand boom, are worried that the high cost of COVID-19 tests could potentially delay their path to recovery.
While the fear of catching COVID-19 remains the main concern of most people, the high cost of testing in the country is further discouraging people from flying again.
Air Carriers Association of the Philippines executive director and vice chairman Roberto Lim said, “A PCR test still cost 3,000 plus pesos. This testing cost, plus air fare, makes it expensive for a family of four. That is 12,000 pesos just on PCR tests.”
Lim said a government subsidy, either from the national or local government, for the PCR test would help ensure that demand would not be dampened by concerns about high testing costs.
He said, “We will welcome government shouldering the cost of PCR testing.” IATA urged governments to act quickly to ensure testing costs do not stall a travel recovery.