KABAYAN, Benguet -- The Protection Area Management Board (Pamb) of Mt. Pulag National Park is set to review the proposed hike of fines by tour guide and porters.
On August 3, members of the Mt. Pulag Eco-Tour Guides and Porters Association Inc. in Babadak, Bashoy notified Mt. Pulag visitors, as well as travel agencies and tour organizers of the new rates of tour guides or porters. The new rate is effected November 1, 2019.
The proposed porter fee from the ranger station to Camp 2 for a 15-kilogram baggage will be raised to P1,000 from P600, P1,200 for Camp 3 or summit from the P800 current rate, and P2,100 for Akiki Trail from the P2,000 current rate.
Porter fee for children ages 0 to 5 years old will be at P1,500 and P2,000 for six to seven years old.
But Pamb, the policy-making body of the protected area, said the increase of fees needs research or science-based resource accounting before implementation.
"The guide fees posted or circulated in the social media are not approved by the Protection Area Management Board of Mt. Pulag National Park, the policy-making body of the protected area," it said.
"Such policies are also subject to the technical review of concerned agencies. As per Republic Act 7856 as amended RA 11030 or expanded Nipas, policies, activities implemented in the park shall be presented to the Pamb for deliberation and are subjected to technical reviews," it added.
Emerita Albas, the Mt. Pulag National Park superintendent under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, told SunStar Baguio that the matter will be discussed.
Mt. Pulag is the highest mountain in northern Luzon.