Among Asia’s best

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    Puka Beach, Boracay Island (Erwin T. Lim)

    This is the Philippines’ fourth time to win Asia’s Leading Beach Destination, and the second time to win Asia’s Leading Dive Destination and Asia’s Leading Tourist Attraction for Intramuros.

    The 27th World Travel Awards recognized the Philippines as Asia’s leading beach destination and Asia’s leading dive destination in 2020.

    The award-giving body also declared Intramuros as Asia’s Leading Tourist Attraction and the Philippine Department of Tourism as this year’s leading tourist board in Asia, besting 11 nominated countries.

    “We are truly honored and thankful for the accolades given to the Philippines at the 2020 World Travel Awards Asia. These recognitions are certainly an inspiration to the industry as we safely and gradually reopen our destinations for tourism. These would not be possible without the combined efforts from our tourism stakeholders, local government units, partner agencies, and our fellow Filipinos who have tirelessly promoted our country’s attractions, products, and culture,” remarked Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat.

    Lagen Dive Site in El Nido, Palawan (Erwin T. Lim)

    This is the Philippines’ fourth time to win Asia’s Leading Beach Destination and the second time to win Asia’s Leading Dive Destination, following a number of nominations for categories since 2006.

    On the other hand, this is the second time for Intramuros to win Asia’s Leading Tourist Attraction. Intramuros first won the award in 2016.

    It is also the second win for the Department of Tourism (DOT) as Asia’s Leading Tourist Board.

    Since 1993, the World Travel Awards has contributed to rising global tourism standards by recognizing brands and best practices from the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries in an annual series of gala ceremonies held per continent.
    Each year is capped off with a Grand Final Gala.

    Both the Philippines and the DOT have the following remaining nominations under the World category: World’s Leading Beach Destination; World’s Leading Dive Destination; World’s Leading Island Destination for Siargao; World’s Leading Tourist Board for DOT; and World’s Leading Tourist Attraction for Intramuros

    Intramuros, Manila (Paco Guerrero)

    Recently, the DOT expressed its support for the gradual reopening of various tourism destinations in the country, putting health and safety as the top priority.

    Among the opened destinations for local tourists are Baguio, Boracay, El Nido, Ilocos Norte, and several diving sites in Batangas province wherein stringent safety protocols are in place.

    Dive tourism is identified by the DOT as one of the key areas in the National Tourism Development Plan (NTDP) 2016 – 2022 that can positively affect industry growth in terms of increased visitor count, extended length of stay, and higher tourism revenue, among others.

    DOT and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines recently launched Travel Philippines, the country’s official travel companion.

    The app provides users access to the latest travel advisories and safety guidelines in various destinations that have reopened to tourism. The easy-to-use platform allows users to create itineraries for their future trips, find up-to-date information on their favorite tourist attractions, and securely store digital copies of travel documents.

    “As we continue to reopen the country’s tourism destinations, Travel Philippines timely serves as every tourist’s official guide to safe and fun travel,” said Puyat.

    “With the ever-changing needs and challenges in travel brought about by the pandemic, Travel Philippines will help both domestic and international tourists have safer and more memorable travel experiences amid our ‘new normal’,” added the tourism chief.

    DOT and TPB developed Travel Philippines in partnership with inclusion tech venture builder HIMO Global Inc. / Talino Venture Labs.

    “Unlike other travel companions, we created the go-to companion for the traveler in the new normal, prioritizing ease in access to the latest safety information about their favorite destinations,” said Winston Damarillo, CEO of HIMO Global Inc./ Talino Venture Labs.

    Within Travel Philippines is an extensive database of various destinations and attractions that are reopening after the COVID-19 community quarantines. At launch, Travel Philippines features six major tourist destinations: Palawan, Boracay, Bohol, Baguio, Ilocos Norte, and Metro Manila.