Tourists reach 1.8M in 1st qtr
Nearly 1.8 million foreign travelers flocked to the Philippines in the first quarter of this year.
The Department of Tourism (DOT) made this statement as it expressed optimism that more visitors would come following the government’s massive investments in infrastructure, aggressive marketing efforts, the expansion of airline routes and lower crime rates.
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo brushed aside concerns about the DOT not meeting its tourism arrival targets after foreign embassies issued travel advisories as a result of the incident at Resorts World Manila and the attacks in Marawi City that led to the imposition of martial law in Mindanao.
“There will always be travel advisories following incidents like these. But the tourists will come back eventually, they will rebook,” Teo told a press conference.
“The Philippines is too enticing a destination to keep people away. People will still come,” she said.
In a statement, Teo said the Philippines remained a “perennial destination” for tourists, with international arrivals breaching the million mark as early as February of this year.
“A total of 1,784,882 visitors have come to the country in the first three months as we continue with our efforts to increase the country’s capacity under the National Tourism Development Plan 2017-2022,” she said.
Nearly half of the tourists came from South Korea, with the rest coming from the United States, China, Japan and Australia.
According to the DOT, about 98 percent of foreign tourists arrived by air and the expansion of air travel routes will result in a higher volume of travelers.
There were around 787,000 international airline seats added in the first quarter.
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