DOT-Davao intensifies campaign for Chinese tourists to visit Davao-A A +A
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
DESPITE political concerns, the Department of Tourism (DOT) wants the Chinese tourists to visit the Philippines. Trading and tourism are definitely over and above the present concerns, according to the National Government.
The Chinese authorities expect the number of Chinese outbound tourists to grow to 100 million by 2020. They spend some $45 billion to $50 billion on travel. This big market of tourists is what Davao tourism would like to target.
Boracay, Cebu, Manila, and Palawan are the destinations already introduced to the Chinese market, according to the Philippine Tourism Office in Beijing.
Davao, with its world class beach resorts, shopping places, cultural attractions, and rich Chinese ties, is now the new foreign destination for the Chinese.
With the growing wedding tourism, Davao can provide the Chinese market the island wedding destination in Samal.
Other interests of the Chinese market are the beaches, shopping, golf, historical sites or culture, and taste of local food, buffet or lauriat. Basic of the Chinese travelers are on incentive trip of companies or group tours.
The DOT records show that in 2010, there were 2,893 Chinese tourists who came to Davao. From 3,178 in 2011, the numbers grew to 4,098 Chinese tourists in 2012.
"We are confident that we shall get more tourists if we continue on marketing Davao and Samal as well as make direct flight connection. We have what they like -- our beaches, our culture, our strong ties with them as we have the only Chinatown in the country aside from Manila and is the biggest in the world. At present, the multi-lingual guides trainings we conducted already produced more Chinese speaking guides," Director Art Boncato of DOT Davao commented.
As DOT continues to encourage the Chinese market to grow, the Davao Cultural Festival will once again be staged at the Marco Polo Parkside in Beijing from September 9 to 27. The festival will feature Davao cuisine by celebrity Chefs Gene Gonzalez and Gino Gonzalez of the Center for Asian Culinary Studies Davao.
Other events include a Davao Media Presentation at 10 a.m. of September 10 and a Davao Product Presentation at 2 p.m. of the same day.
It is expected that around 100 media and travel trade delegates will grace the event. Davao will present cultural dances by the Kalumon Performing Ensemble and explain our various tour packages.
Cebu Pacific Air (CEB), now on its second year as the official airline, will bring the chefs, performers and Davao representatives to Beijing this month. Aside from Beijing, CEB flies from Shanghai, Guangzhou and Xiamen to Manila. From Manila, tourists can take any of the airline's 10 daily flights to Davao.
"We will continue to support DOT Davao in its efforts to increase foreign tourism arrivals to Region 11. Davao is an ideal destination for Chinese tourists who are looking for a new Philippine destination to explore," said CEB VP for Marketing and Distribution Candice Iyog.
In 2011, a similar Davao Cultural Festival was held at the Marco Polo Parkside which resulted to a chartered flight of incentive travelers and media visits as increased interest and awareness in Davao grew. There was also a delegation led by former Mayor Sara Duterte who came to promote the MICE facilities of Davao, especially on the incentive travel sector.
"We shall continue to promote, as marketing is a continuous process and with partners Cebu Pacific Air and Marco Polo Parkside, we can make our presence felt in the Chinese market every year," Boncato added.
Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on September 12, 2013.