Tag Archives: Philippine Tourism

January Philippine tourist arrivals hit all-time high

The Philippines’ tourism industry is off to a promising year, as monthly visitor arrivals hit all-time high of 732,506 in January, based on the latest data disclosed by the Department of Tourism (DOT).

DOT officials credited the impressive figure, indicating a 15.97 percent from January last year, to the concerted efforts of “Team DOT,” the stakeholder travel and tour operators, and the ever-hospitable Filipino community.

Samal Island
Samal Island

The figures gathered by the DOT Tourism Research and Statistics Division, Office of Tourism Planning, showed that a significant factor is the influx of Chinese tourists, as well as the continued arrivals en masse of Koreans, still the no. 1 visitor market.
The South Koreans’ 198,145 arrivals reflect an impressive 28.36 percent rise from January 2017 while the Chinese arrivals of 111,344 indicate a 29.55 percent increase from the same period last year.

“This welcome news bodes well for the tourism sector and the government’s efforts to boost the tourism industry, which is among the top contributors to our gross domestic product,” said Tourism Secretary Wanda Corazon Tulfo-Teo.

“Last year’s momentum carried over this year with the improved air connectivity via increased flights between Philippine gateways and various airports in major visitor markets, including China, Korea, the United States, Australia and Canada,” added Teo.

Recently, Xiamen Airlines mounted a three-times-a-week commercial direct-flight services between Fuzhou, China to Kalibo, Aklan and Puerto Princesa, using Airbus A321 with 197 seat capacity.

“Another new route from China that our Route Development Team is working on is the Tiajin (TJN)-Puerto Princesa (PPS). The development of new routes is in consonance with our National Tourism Development Plan’s strategy to upgrade air connectivity from major tourist source markets to the Philippines,” said Teo.

Also posting a double-digit growth from January 2017 is the United States with visitor arrivals of 109,154 (14.90 percent growth) while Japan contributed with 57,038 (7.79 percent growth), and Australia with 30,924 arrivals (4.41 percent growth).
Other arrivals that improved in January 2018 compared to the same period last year are Canada, 28,913; Taiwan, 18,948; United Kingdom, 18,111; India, 13,779; Singapore (13,627); Malaysia, 12,012; and Hongkong, 9,284.

“I am confident that with the combined efforts of the DOT and the stakeholders, we will achieve our 7.5 million target international arrivals in 2018,” said Teo.

Chinese to come in droves with new air routes to the Philippines

The Philippines stands to gain in the influx of more Chinese visitors with the first-ever direct charter flight from Xiamen (XMN), a coastal city in Fujian Province of China to Puerto Princesa City (PPS), Palawan starting next month.

The Department of Tourism (DOT) paved the way for the creation of the XMN-PPS route which will be launched by February 10 by C&D Travel Service China, a charter operator based in Xiamen, with Philippine Airlines (PAL) as the partner carrier.

Visit Philippines
Visit Philippines

“We continue to welcome more Chinese tourists to the country as part of the improved diplomatic relationship between Manila and Beijing since President Rodrigo Duterte’s state visit to China last year,” said DOT Secretary Wanda Tulfo-Teo.

Regular operations will ensue on February 14 and 18, which will accommodate more visitors from mainland China.

PAL will be utilizing an Airbus A320 with an estimated 160 dual class seat passenger capacity for the said charter flight.

“Just for starters, the new route will produce a total of 480 international air seats just for that period alone. This is on top of the other new routes that Chinese carriers have opened up direct to other tourist destinations in the Philippines last year,” said Benito Bengzon, Jr., DOT Undersecretary for Tourism Development.

Bengzon went on to say, “Another new route from China that our Route Development Team is working on is the Tiajin (TJN)-Puerto Princesa (PPS) also in time for the Chinese New Year. The development of new routes is in consonance with our National Tourism Development Plan’s strategy to improve air connectivity from major tourist source markets to the Philippines.”

To meet the growing demand of Chinese visitors to come to Boracay, Xiamen Airlines earlier this month mounted its direct air commercial services from Fuzhou (FOC), China to Kalibo, Aklan (KLO) using Airbus A321 with 197 seat passenger capacity on a three times weekly frequency.

The said new route was launched last January 12 by Xiamen Airlines with Uni-Orient Travel (PHL) as its major partner.

China, which is the second largest source market of the country following Korea, produced 968,447 tourist arrivals from January to December last year. It is a huge growth of 43.33% from the 2016 Chinese arrivals of 675,663.

DOT Route Development Team Head Erwin Balane added that the new FOC-KLO route will produce up to 591 international air seats bound for the Philippines per week or a total of 30,732 seats per year.