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Demand for travel by Filipinos is increasing this year

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According to the large crowd on the opening day (February 3) of the three-day Travel Tour Expo 2023 organized by the Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA), Filipinos quench their desire for travel with robust demand this year for specific destinations in Asia and beyond.

Most people place South Korea and Japan at the top of their lists, but South Korea’s allure has diminished as a result of stricter visa application requirements.

“Japan has always had a strong bond with the Philippines, and no matter what the reason, they always want to savor a little bit of the local cuisine. Similar to how K-pop and Telenovelas are associated with (South) Korea, they also want to sample some of the cuisines, according to Aileen Clemente, president and chair of Rajah Travel.

Other tour providers at the expo claimed that travel to Bangkok, Singapore, and Hong Kong, which has opened up, is increasing throughout Asia. Dubai is another popular option since, like South Korea, it always has new travel options.

Travelers today prefer doing to seeing, according to Mike Hain, groups manager at Corporate International Travel and Tours, Inc. (CITTI), and it’s more romantic to offer a tour that makes people feel something.

Hain recounted a trip to Finland where all the travelers, including the elderly, felt as though they had gone back in time when they met Santa Claus but without getting to sit on his knee.

A positive reaction was received when CITTI began offering all-inclusive Silversea cruises, mostly for expeditions to the Arctic and Galapagos; the demand comes from seasoned travelers looking to try something new. The same is true of Scandinavia’s unusual locations.

Since so many Filipinos have visited Asia, they now choose to go to long-distance locations like Europe, Canada, and the US. Turkey’s affordable rates and spectacular beauty continue to draw tourists.

Enes Esen, general director of DB Tourism, said that although religious travel by Filipinos is on the rise this year, 2024 and 2025 will be considerably better.

Esen claimed that Rome, Lourdes, and Fatima are three popular religious destinations in Europe. He clarified that while traveling to Europe is expensive, so are trips to Japan and South Korea.

Filipinos also travel more as families, Clemente remarked. While traveling, they want to celebrate and enjoy life and love, but more significantly, they want to go to places where they feel confident in the “emergency reaction” in the event that something were to go wrong.

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