DOT gears up for increased tourism activities

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The Department of Tourism (DOT) said efforts are in full swing to help welcome tourists back to various destinations across the country, now that COVID-19 travel restrictions are slowly being eased. (FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 23) – The Department of Tourism (DOT) said efforts are in full swing to help welcome tourists back to various destinations across the country, now that COVID-19 travel restrictions are slowly being eased.

The agency on Saturday launched a 90-second tourism advertisement with the slogan, "It's More Fun with You"—featuring various destinations in northern Luzon.

It encourages Filipinos "to travel and explore the country again after a long hiatus due to pandemic-related travel restrictions. The said campaign also supports recovery initiatives and efforts of the tourism industry," the DOT said.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat also said the video and other preparations are being made to welcome more tourists in the country in anticipation of the Christmas season, and in light of some destinations like Boracay and Bohol being able to ease travel restrictions for fully vaccinated local tourists.

"With health and safety protocols in place, we can look forward to opening more tourism destinations in time for the holidays, and shift recovery into high gear… Gusto natin ipakita (we would like to show) na it's still more fun in the Philippines while we are all safe,” Puyat added.

The department also said plans are now being made to welcome staycationers in Metro Manila. DOT's Metro Manila regional director Woodrow Maquiling, Jr. said there are now at least 40 staycation hotels open in the National Capital Region.

Intramuros Administration head Atty. Guiller Asido also said group-guided tours in the Walled City will be made available to fully-vaccinated tourists once their tourism frontliners complete their COVID-19 vaccination.

Local authorities recently announced Boracay will scrap negative RT-PCR test requirements for fully vaccinated local tourists by November, once it completes the vaccination of all tourism frontliners and island residents.