THE Cebu Association of Tour Specialists (Catos) will take advantage of the improved relations between the Philippines and neighboring countries in promoting the country as a meetings, incentives, convention and exhibitions (Mice) destination.
The Philippines is now in the radar of Mice organizers, following its successful hostings of Asean and Apec summits, said Catos president Alice Queblatin. She said the country is gaining attention, as organizers and companies look for new destinations to host events that offer rest and recreation (R&R) for participants.
Cebu, according to Queblatin, is a rising post-conference destination. The province’s rich natural resources, beaches, warm people and improved direct connections in Southeast Asia make it a top choice for R&R.
“We are intensifying our campaign to be both a leisure and Mice destination because we can offer a variety of products and experience. We can be both. We should be both,” said Queblatin, adding that Cebu’s past hosting of big-ticket events has introduced the province to the world.
Queblatin, who runs Southwinds Travel and Tours, described Cebu as a great contrast to Singapore. While the latter is an advanced country, especially in terms of infrastructure, Cebu’s slow-paced and resort-feel is a magnet for tourists that want to detach from a fast-paced lifestyle.
The Catos official said this is why Cebu gets the R&R business after every Mice event.
“Delegates can relax and rejuvenate in Cebu, unload the stress and have fun,” she said.
Queblatin added the construction of new rooms and Mice facilities address the needs of the high-spending market.
One of the biggest Mice events to watch out for is the hosting of Routes Asia in 2019. The Department of Tourism (DOT) said this is an opportunity to show off the country’s potential.