DAVAO

Tourists eyed to hike at Pasko Fiesta close

DAVAO. From left, Vicente Nuenay, representing Jose Ong, officer in charge of Barangay and Cultural Communities Affairs, Generose Tecson, City Tourism Operations Office head, Beethoven Sur, Phoenix Corporate Affairs Manager, and Danilo Salvaña, Torotot Festival event organizer. (Cristina Alivio)

A DAVAO City tourism official expects to increase the arrival of visitors in the city as the year 2019 ends and Pasko Fiesta events close with Torotot Festival as its culminating activity.

City Tourism Operations Office head Generose Tecson, during the media launch of Torotot Festival at Dencio’s Kamayan in SM Lanang on Wednesday, December 4, admits the festival does not fail to attract tourists as some want to celebrate festival safely and quietly.

“For us in the City Tourism talagang we promote Christmas and the Holiday season in Davao because there are some people who do not like to celebrate in other places because of the pollution caused by firecrackers. Marami-rami na rin po ang pumupunta dito to celebrate with us or in our hotels, in our resorts because it is healthier New Year here in Davao City,” Tecson said.

She added that as of the moment, for the month of December, tourists arrivals are already going to 200,000, however, she clarified that this data is only based on the hotel occupancy. Tourists who employed home-sharing apps, Tecson said, are hard to track down, thus she is urging self-styled accommodation and lodging space owners to register their business so that the government can get the accurate statistics of tourist arrivals.

The city government has been urging for home-sharing accommodation owners to register their business not only to easily track down tourists and for tourists statistics but also so that the city can help them promote their business.

In fact, former tourism and beautification committee chair Al Ryan Alejandre proposed a separate ordinance for owners of condominium units and houses registered to AirBnB and other self-styled home accommodations to pay proper taxes, secure business permits, and submit to the city’s regulatory laws.

Aside from this, it was also a part of the amendment on the Tourism Code of the city.

“I also presented this to tourism council for adaption. We are just asking these operators of AirBnB and other home-sharing apps to please visit the CTOO so we can assist them, so we can account, so we know what should be done about it. We want them to have their own associations so they are well-represented in the tourism council. With this, we can help them promote and improve their operations as well,” Alejandre said during the PPP press conference on July 10 last year.

This year’s Pasko Fiesta’s Torotot Festival is sponsored by homegrown firm, Phoenix Petroleum.


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