Over 1.6M int’l travelers arrive in Philippines since February —DOT │ GMA News Online

More than 1.6 million international travelers have arrived in the Philippines since vacation travel reopened in February this year, the Department of Tourism (DOT) said on Thursday.

At the Senate committee hearing, DOT Secretary Christina Frasco reported that the county had received a total of 1,664,550 international arrivals through Oct. 5.

This was an increase from the 163,879 international tourist arrivals in pandemic-hit 2021.

“Please note that for the DOT’s internal projections, we assumed that we would only receive 1.7 million tourists by December of this year,” Frasco said.

“Therefore this shows an upward trend in arrivals and the current strategies that we have recalibrated and applied since the start of this government have resulted in an increase in arrivals and will allow us to extend the current forecasts of 1.7 million by the end of the year to be surpassed. ” She said.

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Frasco said that among the top source markets this year were the United States with 315,279 tourist arrivals; followed by Korea with 220,402; Australia with 77,249; Canada with 70,159; and United Kingdom with 63,533.

Frasco also said the trend has led to an increase in employment in the tourism-related industry, which employs 4.9 million people, up 4.6% from the 4.68 million reported last year.

She said at least 8,310 job vacancies were posted at 157 facilities in Manila, Cebu and Davao in a “Trabaho Truism Asenso,” a job fair organized by the Ministry of Tourism in cooperation with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE). in September.

It also found that 8,305 applicants were initially qualified and required further assessment, while 530 applicants were referred to the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) for further training.

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“In my discussion with the DOLE secretary [Bienvenido Estudillo] Laguesma said there was a labor shortage of over 12,000 jobs in the tourism industry and considering the job fair offered over 8,000 jobs then we are on our way [to] to address this labor shortage,” she said.

“Since this will be a multi-month campaign, we will be running it until next year’s anniversary of the DOT. We hope to fully address the shortage of 12,000 job boards by next year,” she added.

improve heritage sites

Meanwhile, Senator Loren Legarda called on the Department of Tourism to prioritize the improvement and rehabilitation of the country’s UNESCO World Heritage sites to boost tourism.

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Legarda said accommodation close to heritage sites and toilets must also be prioritized.

“It is a modest proposal to prioritize UNESCO World Heritage sites, infrastructure, nearby accommodation and clean toilets. It’s very simple and I think we can see people’s culture and we see how clean we are, how we live, disinfect,” Legarda said.

“So [build] clean toilets with running water because sometimes they build [restrooms] Walang tubig, walang flush, I know it’s that simple [to] discussing in the committee hearing, but yes, it shows mindfulness,” she added.

Frasco took note of the senator’s suggestions and said they will ensure they are included in the department’s programs for the coming year. – LBG, GMA News

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