Tourism growth steady despite travel advisories

City Tourism Office admits that tourist arrivals were affected by negative advisories.

Tourist arrivals in Puerto Princesa City have kept to almost the same figures as the previous year despite the setback experienced by the sector because of the negative travel advisories released by various foreign embassies, according to the City tourism office.

Tourist arrivals during the January-August period of 2017 stood at around 600,000 comprising mostly of domestic tourists, which was close to the same figures from last year, according to city tourism officer Aileen Cynthia Amurao.

Amurao, during the Philippine Information Agency (PIA)-hosted Kapihan last Thursday said that to date, the local tourism industry has remained stable despite suffering setbacks in April and June.

“We did experience a negative for the month of April, maybe because of the travel advisories. We also turned negative in June because the international flight (from Taiwan) was reduced to one per week,” she said, stating that Americans still topped the list of foreign visitors to the city. Top travelers to the city are also Taiwanese citizens.

“Of course, because of the travel advisories. If there is a travel advisory, no one would give travel insurance as your government will discourage you from traveling,” Amurao said.

She claimed the travel advisories issued by the United States and the United Kingdom in April, and the Marawi siege, have “severely affected” tourist arrivals not only in Palawan but the whole country.

To cope with this, Amurao explained that the CTD also issued its own travel advisory assuring foreign and domestic tourists that Puerto Princesa is exerting all efforts to keep them safe.

On September 28, Amurao said the city government will hold a tourism summit to present the city’s tourism master plan.


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