RP eyes high prospects in Taiwan’s outbound market

RP eyes high prospects in Taiwan’s outbound market

Charter flights to Kalibo, Boracay to boost arrivals

Optimistic to get a bigger slice of the outbound market of Taiwan in time for the upcoming winter months’ long vacation and the Chinese New Year in February 2010, the Department of Tourism (DOT) has recently conducted presentations in three big cities of Kaohsiung, Taichung and Taipei, in Taiwan.

Tourism Secretary Ace Durano said, “Taiwan continues to be one of the country’s top source markets for nature-based travel. Prospects are high from this market, as we keep up our strong tourism links with this segment.”

Pointing to increased charter flights to Kalibo and Boracay, Durano noted, “Ease of travel is integral to tourism activity. With continued and additional charter flights, our most popular beach destinations can expect increased arrivals for the coming year ahead.”

The presentations and meetings with various airline officials and tourism leaders in Taiwan were led by Undersecretary for Tourism Planning and Promotions Eduardo Jarque, Jr., Ireneo Reyes, Taiwan Tourism Representative; Sonia Garcia, Director of DOT-Region 10, and Ma. Rica Bueno, Head of Team Asia Pacific.

“The Philippines remains an acknowledged tropical destination for our white-sand beaches. Moreover, our tourism facilities are ready to accommodate numerous travelers who are looking for that unique island getaway,” Jarque shared.

A total of 350 local travel agents attended the product presentation in the three cities which highlighted Davao as a new destination for Taiwanese travelers in the coming year. Garcia presented Davao’s ‘islands to highlands’ attractions.

Jarque noted, “Davao has the best of both worlds. For nature lovers who want to experience mountain trekking and afterwards enjoy the waters, this is truly the place for them.”

A highlight of the delegation’s visit was to strengthen existing tourism relations, particularly on the chartered flights from Taiwan to the Philippines.

Mandarin Airlines recently started the Taichung – Kalibo charter flight mid-October of this year, while China Airlines is continuing their Boracay charter service opened in May 2008. A possible re-opening of the Taipei – Cebu charter flight was likewise brought to the table with China Airlines through its Vice President James Yu.

Meanwhile, Philippine Airlines (PAL) also announced the newest addition to the various charter flights from Taipei to Kalibo. According to Sindy Lin, PAL Country Manager in Taiwan, “The PAL Taipei-Kalibo charter will start on December 9, 2009 using A320 aircraft with seating capacity of 150.”

Jarque expressed DOT’s gratitude for the continuing support of both airlines in providing direct charter service to Kalibo, the gateway to Boracay Island.

Boracay tops the list of favorite destination among the Taiwanese consumers followed by Cebu, Bohol, Palawan and Manila. The Taiwanese showed interest in dive sites, golf and English language program.

Alongside the promotional efforts was the Philippines’ active participation in the Taipei International Travel Fair (TITF) held at the Taipei World Trade Center, highlighting Davao as a premier nature and adventure destination.

For her part, Bueno said, “This year’s TITF attracted a bigger delegation from the Philippines. The participation of 17 tourism establishments from the private sector made the Philippine booth even stronger in promoting the country to Taiwanese tourists.”

The 63-sq. m. Philippine pavilion at the TITF provided a very good venue for Philippine sellers & partner agents to promote various tour programs. The booth adopted a beach wedding theme to promote the country as a beach wedding & honeymoon destination. Tour operators, hotel and resort’s representatives from Manila, Boracay and Davao joined the Philippine delegation.

The Center for Philippine Arts & Culture, Jeron Travel, Hafti Tours, Pearl of the Pacific, Crown Regency Hotels and Resorts, Patio Pacific, Busina Company Inc., El Nido Resorts, Boracay Regency, Subic Holiday, Cebu Pacific Air, Philippine Airlines, Surelite Travel & Tours, PR Travel Consultants, Inc. Southern Travel Corp., 829 One World Travel Express and St. Christopher Travel and Business Center, were the participants in this year’s productive country presentation.

Six local travel agents from Taiwan also joined the Philippine booth; namely A Team Travel Services; Fu Hsia Travel services; Wonderful Tours; Castle Tours; and De-Wey Study Abroad ESL Program.

"Both the Philippine private sector and the local agents reported good business deals for the country for 2010. Participants were able to get a total of 221 confirmed bookings for group tours and more than 800 queries were registered during the three - day fair," Bueno added.

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