Tourist arrivals in 2019 soar to all-time high

Published March 2, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Joseph Almer Pedrajas

The number of foreign tourist arrivals in the country soared to an all-time high, recording 8.2 million in 2019, the Department of Tourism (DOT) said Monday.

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo- Puyat (ALBERT GARCIA / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)
Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo- Puyat (ALBERT GARCIA / FILE PHOTO / MANILA BULLETIN)

The figure resulted in a total of P482.15 billion income to the Philippines, which is about 21 percent higher than 2018’s P390.7 billion, the DOT said.

DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat attributed the rise in foreign tourist arrivals to the “strong collaborative efforts among government, industry, and civil society in realizing [their goals], the masterplan of the country’s sustainable and inclusive program… and the dispersal of benefits to the country side.”

“The Philippine tourism industry’s continued impressive performance dramatizes the dedication, hard work and resilience of its stakeholders through a most challenging year. We count on the same enduring qualities to get us through the challenges this year,” Puyat said.

Data from the DOT showed that a foreign guest could incur US$128 in average daily expenditure or about US$1,218 in 10 days.

These figures confirm the importance of tourism sector in driving economic growth, Puyat said.

South Korean tourists are the “consistent top visitors,” spending about US$2.6 billion,  followed by Chinese and Americans.

Also included in the top 10 visitors are from Japan, Canada, Australia, Taiwan, United Kingdom, Germany, and Malaysia.