Tourism arrivals in the Philippines reach record high

The clean-up and reopening of Boracay island contributed to the surge in visitors this year © Arno Maierbrugger

Visitor arrivals in the Philippines went up significantly to eight million this year from 7.1 million in 2018, according to latest government figures. It is the highest number of annual visitors in history, said Philippine tourism secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, calling it “another milestone to celebrate, as it marks the unprecedented growth of the country’s tourism industry.”

Eight million arrivals were also the benchmark set by the government for 2019, reached four days before 2019 ends.

Puyat attributed the historic number to a variety of factors, primarily the growing influx of Chinese holidaymakers, the refreshed branding campaign “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” and the re-opening of Boracay island resort after a six-month clean up.

Other factors were sustainable tourism advocacy efforts, improved air connectivity, hosting of big ticket tourism events, intensified digital and online marketing, mainstreaming of different tourism product portfolios including culinary tourism and farm tourism, efficient private-public partnerships, as well as international accolades and recognitions, Puyat noted.

As for the most important source countries for tourists, South Korea remains on top with around 1.6 million arrivals last year. China is now the second largest country of origin, with around 1.25 million welcomed last year. In the first ten months of 2019, Chinese tourists already counted for around 1.5 million, increasing a whopping 41 per cent from the same period in 2018.

Third largest source country is the U.S., followed by Japan, Australia, Taiwan, Canada, U.K., Singapore and Malaysia.

According to the Philippines Statistics Authority, the tourism industry contributed 12.7 per cent to the Philippine GDP in 2018.

The clean-up and reopening of Boracay island contributed to the surge in visitors this year © Arno Maierbrugger Visitor arrivals in the Philippines went up significantly to eight million this year from 7.1 million in 2018, according to latest government figures. It is the highest number of annual visitors in history, said Philippine tourism secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, calling it “another milestone to celebrate, as it marks the unprecedented growth of the country's tourism industry." Eight million arrivals were also the benchmark set by the government for 2019, reached four days before 2019 ends. Puyat attributed the historic number to a...

The clean-up and reopening of Boracay island contributed to the surge in visitors this year © Arno Maierbrugger

Visitor arrivals in the Philippines went up significantly to eight million this year from 7.1 million in 2018, according to latest government figures. It is the highest number of annual visitors in history, said Philippine tourism secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, calling it “another milestone to celebrate, as it marks the unprecedented growth of the country’s tourism industry.”

Eight million arrivals were also the benchmark set by the government for 2019, reached four days before 2019 ends.

Puyat attributed the historic number to a variety of factors, primarily the growing influx of Chinese holidaymakers, the refreshed branding campaign “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” and the re-opening of Boracay island resort after a six-month clean up.

Other factors were sustainable tourism advocacy efforts, improved air connectivity, hosting of big ticket tourism events, intensified digital and online marketing, mainstreaming of different tourism product portfolios including culinary tourism and farm tourism, efficient private-public partnerships, as well as international accolades and recognitions, Puyat noted.

As for the most important source countries for tourists, South Korea remains on top with around 1.6 million arrivals last year. China is now the second largest country of origin, with around 1.25 million welcomed last year. In the first ten months of 2019, Chinese tourists already counted for around 1.5 million, increasing a whopping 41 per cent from the same period in 2018.

Third largest source country is the U.S., followed by Japan, Australia, Taiwan, Canada, U.K., Singapore and Malaysia.

According to the Philippines Statistics Authority, the tourism industry contributed 12.7 per cent to the Philippine GDP in 2018.

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