With summer a few months away, Singapore Tourism Board’s area director for the Philippines and Brunei Sherina Chan hopes to get many Filipino travelers with a slew of new attractions Singapore is offering for tourists.
Chan said most Filipinos view Singapore as an expensive destination. She, however, is confident that the quality and variety of what Singapore has to offer makes travel to their country “sulit.”
She said Filipino visitors are some of their fastest growing international tourists, ranking third after China and Taiwan. Filipino tourists are also their sixth largest market.
For the first half of last year, 349,000 Filipinos visited Singapore. Chan said that as 2012 was a good year for the Philippine economy, she expects this figure to be much higher when they get the full year results.
“Nowadays, more people are coming back. The notion of mahal has changed because there’s always something new. We’re evolving as a city,” Chan said.
Chan presented different attractions for those traveling as a family, as a couple or with a group of friends this summer, saying consumer research notes people travel differently depending on who they are with.
Most Filipinos travel as a family, she said.
This year, they are anticipating the opening of the River Safari by March. The attraction aims to present visitors with an up-close view of freshwater habitats and animals mirroring the great rivers of the world like the Nile, Amazon, Ganges, Mekong, Mississippi, Murray, Yangtze and the Congo.
“With the opening of the River Safari, we hope to cement Singapore as the ultimate family-friendly destination,” Chan said.
For those who cannot get enough of marine life, Resorts World Sentosa also recently opened the Marine Life Park, an oceanarium and waterpark.
Also new in Singapore is Gardens By the Bay, a complex of glasshouses and conservatories for different plants and flowers.
They expect groups of friends to enjoy the Big Wig Music Festivals in April at the Fort Canning Park and the Asian Fashion Exchange, an event that promotes new fashion designers around Asia.
Also on its 20th year is the Great Singapore Sale from May 31 to July 28. Groups also enjoy pub hopping in Singapore and that pub crawling tours are also available.
They hope to see more couples try out the Singapore Flyer, a giant observation wheel made up of fully-air conditioned capsules with views of Singapore’s cityscape. Special capsules are also available for exclusive use for those who want a different dining experience. They are offering breakfast, high tea, canapés and special dinners. They also have exclusive offers for Valentine’s Day.
Chan said foodies can plan their visit during the World Street Food Congress beginning May 31 and have a taste of different street food from around the world. The festival also features street food aficionados Anthony Bourdain and Jean-Georges Vongerichten.