DOT eyes more tourist rest areas

DOT eyes more tourist rest areas

TWENTY more Tourist Rest Areas (TRAs) are expected to be built this coming months, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT).

The DOT said it expects to open TRAs in Batanes, Pangasinan, Bulacan, Palawan, Camarines Sur, Albay, Panay Island, Tacloban City, Eastern Samar, Misamis Oriental, Tacurong City in Sultan Kudarat, Siargao in Surigao del Norte, Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, among others.

Ten TRAs have already been built in major tourist destinations across the Philippines.

TRAs feature the provision of clean restrooms with showers for tourists in transit to different tourist destinations. It also has a coffee shop, pasalubong and tourist information area, a charging station and a souvenir store carrying a variety of products that are proudly made in the Philippines. It adopts the use of local materials and design elements.

DOT’s attached agency Tourism Infrastructure and Enterprise Zone Authority (Tieza) is in charge of the funding and construction of the TRAs, while the DOT serves as the overall monitor and evaluator of the project.

Local government units where these TRAs are located are tasked with the day-to-day operation and maintenance of the facility.

Award

On Thursday, June 13, 2024, the TRA project, a brainchild of Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco, brought DOT the win in the Infrastructure Project of the Year – Tourism category GovMedia Conference & Awards 2024 at the Marina Bay Sands Expo and Convention Center in Singapore.

The GovMedia Conference & Awards is a prestigious event that spotlights outstanding government projects and initiatives in Asia that contribute to the well-being of the people in the region.

Besides the TRA, the DOT also bagged the Training Program of the Year – Tourism for the Filipino Brand of Service Excellence (FBSE) training.

According to the DOT, the FBSE training program is a game-changing initiative designed to provide excellent service to both local and international tourists visiting the Philippines.

It includes one of the warm and sincere ways of welcoming tourists, the “Mabuhay and Salamat” gestures throughout their arrival and until they leave, serving guests under the seven values of Filipino hospitality where there will be an opportunity to showcase the Filipino brand of service excellence at tourist touchpoints.

FBSE has already conducted 2,997 trainings and empowered a total of 148,710 trained stakeholders in all regions of the country by the end of 2023.

Meanwhile, the DOT’s marketing arm, the Tourism Promotions Board, also bagged the Tourism Initiative of the Year. / KOC

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