The Philippines has welcomed over four million foreign visitors in its latest report, according to Department of Tourism (DOT) Secretary Christina Frasco, who shared this encouraging data today. The country has achieved a total of 4,005,465 arrivals, contributing to more than PHP316 billion in tourism spending at the time of reporting.
“I am delighted to announce that today we have reached the four-million mark in international arrivals in the Philippines,” stated Frasco as she graced the opening of the Travel Sale Expo 2023 and the 1st Global Tourism Conference Trade Fair at SM Megamall.
With the anticipation of revenge travel and an expected surge of tourists during the holiday season, Frasco remains optimistic that the country can still meet its target of 4.8 million arrivals by the year’s end. She emphasized, “The Philippines continues to be a top-of-mind destination worldwide. We have multiple award-winning destinations. We are confident that we will not only meet but possibly surpass the year-end target.”
Of the total arrivals for the period, 91.58 percent or 3,668,039 are foreign visitors, while 8.42 percent or 337,426 are overseas Filipinos.
South Korea stands as the Philippines’ leading tourist market, with 1.04 million visitors this year, followed by the United States (679,090), Japan (221,671), China (194,258), and Australia (187,143).
Other visitors came from Canada with 164,168; Taiwan with 146,396; the United Kingdom with 114,096 ; Singapore with 107,674; and Malaysia with 72,008 (1.80 percent).
Frasco assured tourism stakeholders that DOT is committed to collaborating with them to promote the Philippines as a premier destination. She affirmed, “Tourism is back. What I can guarantee our partners in the private sector within the tourism industry is that we will make every effort to match the dedication you’ve shown to ensure the continued success of this sector.”
Additionally, Frasco stated that the DOT will persist in advocating for visa policy reforms to attract more Chinese tourists and other emerging markets to the country. She expressed her hope for improvements in the new electronic visa system, which was piloted in China last August.