PH secures two major awards in 2019 World Travel Awards

Aileen Cerrudo   •   October 16, 2019   •   452

TOURISM AWARDS – Department of Tourism Undersecretary Arturo Boncato Jr. receives the Asia’s Leading Tourism Board and Asia’s Leading Dive Destination awards at the 2019 World Travel Awards on Saturday (Oct. 12). The DOT was hailed as Asia’s Leading Tourism Board after a significant increase in the country’s visitor arrivals has been recorded in the past year. (Photo courtesy of DOT)

The Philippines bagged two major awards at the 2019 World Travel Awards in Vietnam on October 12.

The 2019 World Travel Awards has hailed the Department of Tourism (DOT) as Asia’s Leading Tourism Board after it recorded a significant increase in visitor arrivals for the country in the past year.

There was a 14.08 percent year-on-year increase in the country’s international inbound traffic, based on the data of the DOT.

The country was also recognized as Asia’s Leading Dive Destination. According to the DOT, dive tourism is one of the key areas in the National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP ) 2016 – 2022.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said the awards are “for all Filipinos to celebrate.”

“A triumph as great as this simply could not be possible without the combined hard work from the government, industry partners, and tourism stakeholders in realizing a more upward tourism industry for the country,” she said.—AAC

DOT announces Boracay now open to youths, seniors from Western Visayas

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 24, 2020

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has announced that young and senior tourists from Western Visayas are now allowed to visit Boracay Island.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said Boracay will reopen for tourists, ages below 21 and above 60, from Western Visayas.

“This move aims to further reinvigorate the tourism economy in the region and address the earlier clamor of Boracay tourism stakeholders to attract more tourists to the island,” she said.

The Inter-Agency Task Force on Emerging Infectious Diseases (IATF-EID) on Thursday (July 23) approved the DOT’s recommendation to lift the ban on tourists below 21 and above 60 on Boracay island.

Puyat assured the government will continue to put the safety of the public first and will strictly implement health and safety protocol as the island reopens. She also noted that there were no reported coronavirus (COVID-19) cases on the island.

“The DOT will always put paramount concern on the safety of our people — tourists and residents alike,” she said. AAC

DOT mandates maximum of double occupancy for hotels under ‘new normal’

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 21, 2020

The Department of Tourism (DOT) has mandated hotels and other tourism-related accommodations to only have a maximum of double occupancy as part of the ‘new normal’.

According to DOT Usec. Arturo Boncato, they will limit the occupancy or capacity of hotel accommodations up to two persons per room. This also includes limiting the number of customers in restaurants.

“DOT will be mandating a maximum of double occupancy for all of the hotels. And for restaurants starting with 50% occupancy in terms of operations for in-dining,” he said.

The Tourism Department said they will release the set of policies to be implemented once the operation of tourism-related establishments resume under the modified general community quarantine (MGCQ).

Other safety measures include regular sanitation and disinfection, supply of sanitation/disinfecting provisions for workers; regular inspection of health and safety standards being implemented. AAC (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

Over 1,000 stranded tourists across the Philippines return home

Aileen Cerrudo   •   May 4, 2020

Over 1,000 stranded tourists in various destinations in the country have returned home, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT).

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat in a statement said that the groups arrived from various local airports on seven sweeper flights arranged by the DOT.

“A total of 1,049 distressed travelers reached Manila in succeeding schedules. On Friday, 180 tourists arrived from Puerto Princesa, 60 from El Nido and 144 from Boracay,” the DOT said in a statement.

DOT-NCR Regional Director Woodrow C. Maquiling, Jr. said the returning tourists were subjected to rapid anti-body testing at the airport. He also reported that none of them tested positive for the coronavrus disease (COVID-19).

“To date, the DOT has assisted some 22,264 foreign visitors and 2,505 local tourists stranded in the past month-and-half under ECQ,” the DOT said. AAC (with reports from Asher Cadapan Jr.)

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