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2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

Melbourne, Australia
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2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

Given that Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda) resulted in foreign tourist arrival growth in November and December 2013 compared with the same months in the previous year being slashed to 2.51 and 2.39 per cent respectively, the above year on year rise of 9.56 per cent to more than 4.6 million is an excellent performance.

I am guessing that Asian inbound package tour tourists were the source of many cancellations in November and December 2013. Vistors from South Korea declined by 12 per cent in both these last two months of 2013. Because about one in four tourists coming to Philippines are from South Korea, this decline makes a big hit in the numbers.

Mainland China was the big 'improver' in 2013 with its citizens' visits to the land of 7107 islands rising by 70 per cent. South Korean arriovals rose 13 per cent (a figure that would have been in excess of 15 per cent were it not for the two last months of 2013) but Taiwanese arrivals dropped almost 40 per cent.

Arrivals from ASEAN countries rose by more than 12 per cent, with Vietnam (28 per cent), Indonesia (almost 25 per cent) and small but wealthy Brunei (38 per cent) among the standouts.

Recession hit Ireland sent 28 per cent more tourists while India, the Russian Federation, Poland and surprisingly (though from a small base) Israel had marked rises in travellers to Philippines.

It is encouraging that in December 2013, arrivals from Canada rose 12 per cent and from USA seven per cent, but this activity after a long period of anamic growth (particularly from USA) may be due to 'voluntourism' following the typhoon. I doubt that serving military are counted as 'tourists' but who knows?

It is very pleasing that once again, Australians continued to flock to Philippines with total yearly arrivals broaching 200,000 for the first time (at 213000). We may be only 23 million but as a nation that largely prefers independent to group travel, more of us each year are discovering that Philippines is a great alternative to Thailand and Bali, Indonesia (Philippines' two biggest competitors) and even to a smaller extent Fiji.

Some pundits are saying that the USA economy may recover a bit in 2014: this is yet to be proven, but even if it is a mild recovery, Philippines will benefit in tourism.

Hopefully the South Koreans realise that 95 per cent plus of Philippines was unaffected or has recovered from the typhoon (the major exception is Tacloban City, Leyte and some other centres on Leyte) so they should come back in numbers.

Overall although it did not meet the over optimistic target, it was still an excellent result. Congratulations to Tourism Secretary Mr Ramon Jimenez.

Edited: 21 February 2014, 23:02
philippines
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1. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

Increase year in year out without any major developments with the philippines' airports is a feat in itself.

Luzon, Philippines
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2. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

If every Filipino abroad just encourage 1 of their foreigner friend to visit the Philippines then the foreign tourist arrival will increase by more than 100% in no time.

philippines
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3. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

^^^^^ if that happens without the needed airport infra developments, I will really be impressed.

Melbourne, Australia
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4. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

al22tecc, there is often room for more passengers - at least on board aircraft flying in and out of MNL, CEB, CRK, KLO, DVO and other international ports.

Load factors are not 100 per cent year round.

For instance on its routes to SYD and MEL, Philippine Airlines is usually full southbound throughout January, but northbound there are spare seats from about 5 January. February, May and November northbound are rarely busy.

It is a different story on the ground where roads such as Airport Road are under severe pressure for much of the day and early to mid evening, although not always in both directions.

Puerto Princesa...
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5. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

It was a good result, and around the figure that was forseen by contributors here.

I'm not sure if the over optimistic targets are a deliberate policy to encourage everyone in the industry to work harder or if it's just....well, optimistic!

Whichever, there is NO way that the 10 million target for 2016 can be achieved.

Melbourne, Australia
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6. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

Vetus, I agree entirely. 10 million is fanciful.

That said, at least every visitor counted is 'genuine' as far as I can establish, whereas the far higher Malaysian and Thai tourist arrivals may include those who travel over the border from say Singapore for a few hours to shop.

In one sense, nothing wrong with that, because they are leisure or business tourists who make a contribution to another nation's economy, but they may not always be visitors who have flown in such as must occur with almost all visitors to Philippines.

Puerto Princesa...
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7. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

Not sure about those Malaysian and Thai numbers, but certainly Sabah is totally open in the way that arrivals are counted.

Seperate figures showing Malaysian arrivals and arrivals from Brunei and Indonesia - so giving an accurate picture.

Luzon, Philippines
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8. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

I think the Department of Tourism should underestimate and overdeliver. I am also skeptical with the 10 million target.

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9. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

10 million is achievable but probably not by 2016..the target date. takes infrastructure, takes access, constant marketing and good positive news..because unlike Thailand, every single bad incident in the Phils still gets magnified by the international media and sends ripples of unfounded fear to would-be tourists

10. Re: 2013 visitor arrivals were 4681377 -up 9.56 per cent on 2012

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