By Analou De Vera
The Department of Tourism (DOT) said that over 600,000 foreign tourists had visited the country in April alone, registering a 12.15 percent growth rate as compared to the previous year.
“International tourist arrivals in April 2019 reached 662,987, registering a 12.15 percent growth vis-a-vis 591,137 received last year,” the tourism department said.
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat attributed the increase in foreign tourist arrivals to the “heightened marketing initiatives with the private sector and travel trade counterparts in the various markets, improved connectivity arising from new flights, additional frequencies and expanded capacity brought about by new and upgraded airports.”
“We also attribute increased travel movement and consumption to continued efforts in developing new and existing tourism circuits all over the country in pursuit of sustainable tourism,” she added.
The DOT reported that the top source market for the month of April was China, with 139,177 Chinese visiting the country.
South Korea ranked second with 130,707, followed by the United States of America with 87,710, Japan with 57,724, and Australia with 28,683.
The total foreign visitor count for January to April 2019 is 2,867,551, or an increase of 8.57 percent as compared to the 2,642,241 during the same period last year, the DOT said.
“We anticipate more visitors to keep this upward trend sustained,” said Puyat.