Philippines E-Newsletter - June 2012

The start of the month has been truly exciting for Philippines tourism, with President Benigno Aquino III and Secretary Ramon Jimenez Jr. promoting the country’s “It’s more fun in the Philippines” tourism campaign during their visit to London.

The Philippines Department of Tourism (PDOT) London has already seen substantial inquiries from many British tourists, since introducing the campaign in the UK with 25 buses and 50 taxis with the “It’s more fun in the Philippines” logo.

Continued promotions by the Department resulted in an increase in the international tourism arrivals to the country. A total of 1,497,851 visitors came to the country from January to April 2012, an increase of 14.61% over the previous year’s volume of 1,306,944 for the same period.

PDOT continues to pursue new and traditional marketing initiatives to promote the country as top tourist and most FUN destination to the UK and European markets.

In this issue:

  Major Programs
  Destination of the Month
  Package of the Month
  DOT News

Major Programs

Top


PH “More Fun” campaign captures international spotlight in London, rest of Europe

The country’s new tourism slogan, “It’s more fun in the Philippines,” continues to draw attention and take its place on the global stage.

The campaign was recently launched in London through a 45-minute fun motorcade that featured advertisements on the iconic London double-decker buses and taxi cabs. Twenty-five (25) double-decker buses and fifty (50) iconic black cabs sporting a uniform design of the slogan, logo, and different faces of the Philippines are now spotted around the bustling streets of London. The subway stations also display images of the world-famous Ifugao Rice Terraces and the Puerto Princesa Underground River, both proclaimed as World Heritage Sites.

With London’s 7.5 million population and 15 million international visitors every year, the Philippines is certainly generating awareness not only among the British population, but also among visitors to the United Kingdom (UK), who have have expressed their excitement and confidence in the PH campaign.

“I've seen the bus advertisements a couple of times, as well as the one in the underground, which made me stop and do a double take, as I hadn't seen a Philippine ad in the tube before. I hope that it succeeds in attracting more people to the country,” shares John Oates, contributor to Rough Guides to the Philippines and member of the British Guild of Travel Writers. Mr. Oates looks forward to writing about the Philippines again and plans to visit in June.

Simon Beck, Director of Orbital Communications, an integrated sales, marketing, and PR solutions provider to travel brands in the UK, finds the bus ads a really good idea that was executed very well. “I wish you every success with the new campaign. I think it’s so creative...and was telling the Ambassador the same. It’s exciting times ahead for you and I hope I can help support you on this exciting journey,” Mr. Beck enthused.

The Philippine Department of Tourism is the very first national tourism organization to advertise through the taxis’ digital platform owned by Verifone Media. The London cabs come with a 30-minute digital ad which features the 30-seconder “It’s more fun in the Philippines” TVC and 15-seconder tarsier TVC recently launched worldwide via global network giant CNN through a series of “Eye On” features on the Philippines. The media campaign through these London cabs will continue to run until early next year, with the opportunity to capture the millions of visitors and household viewers of the Queen’s Jubilee, the London 2012 Olympics.

Filipinos based in London, who caught a glimpse of the ads, likewise expressed their full support and enthusiasm for the new campaign. “Absolutely Brilliant! I rode the cab and saw the digital advertisement. It’s very witty, great tag line, and good visuals. It captures the audience because you’re just sitting in there and you will really watch it. Really good marketing campaign. Not just for foreigners, but for Filipinos as well. It reminded me of home,” shares Innah Viray-Lim, a Filipino currently in London as consultant for Shell. Many Filipinos residing in the UK also tweeted that they want to have a photo opportunity with the bus and taxi cabs after seeing the launch last May.

The campaign’s roll-out in London was also featured by several UK travel trade media publications such as Travel Bulletin, Travel Daily News Asia, and ABTA Magazine.

The April issue of Selling Long Haul placed the spotlight on some of the Philippines’ new resorts, hotels, and adventure activities. The issue also quoted several tour operator representatives sharing their great experiences visiting the country. Equator Diving, a partner dive tour operator, reported successful group visits to Anilao in their April and May newsletters. "Diving here has been a never-ending educational process of discovery and documenting, photographing some of the most intriguing and diverse marine animals on Planet Earth," Mike Batrick, one of the members, exclaimed.

The Irish Times, Ireland's highly-respected and widely-circulated newspaper, featured the Philippine Embassy in Dublin’s launch of “It’s more fun in the Philippines” among business leaders at St Stephen’s Green. More features on the Philippines made their way in the English Midlands with published articles in Lancashire Telegraph and Newcastle Evening Chronicle broadsheets written by Wesley Johnson after her visit to several islands in the Philippines.

More editorials are expected to come out as Diver and Sport Diver magazines talk about the world-famous diving sites in the Philippines such as Cebu, Dumaguete, Puerto Galera, and Malapascua in their June and July issues. Sport Diver will continue to promote the Philippines in July with a 5-page spread on the whalesharks of Oslob.

The Philippines gained wider publicity in other parts of Europe as it was also featured by other travel magazines, online articles, and broadsheets in Italy and Spain. The April issue of In Viaggio of Italy detailed the recent trip of Hotelplan's 35 agents to various places in the Philippines.

The underwater gems of Coron and Anilao were also captured in two articles entitled "Los Pecios de Coron" and "Bienvenidos a Nudi City", which appeared on Inmersion Magazine, one of Spain's top diving publications. Meanwhile, another article on Coron, “Lagos de Coron," also appeared in Viajes de Buceo magazine. These articles were the result of familiarization trips organized by Buceo Filipinas.

“The world is now starting to see that ‘It’s More Fun in the Philippines’ is not just a bunch of words on a streamer. It is a competitive argument for choosing the Philippines as one of the world’s top tourist destinations. Philippine tourism is poised to surge forward as we launch more aggressive initiatives to reinvigorate the industry and work towards achieving our 10 million target by 2016,” beamed Philippine Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez, Jr.

Destination of the Month

Top


Baguio, Summer Capital of the Philippines


Baguio City is often called either "The Summer Captial of the Philippines", "City of Pines" or "City of Flowers". It owes all that to its elevation of 1,400 metres above sea level and its cooler than any place in the country even during the sweltering summer. The city is perfumed by the scent of pines wafting from its pine-covered hills its many species of flowers abound nearly everywhere.

Baguio's Attractions include the Botanical Gardens – or so-called “the Igorot Village,” which feature native huts typical of Cordillera architecture. This village captures the ethnic spirit and cultural legacy of the Igorot dweller. The garden is also a site of cultural presentations and other tribal meetings.

Burnham Park is the oldest of all Baguio parks. One can unwind from the tension of the daily grind by biking, skating or simply reflecting on the day’s experiences amidst a soothing backdrop of colourful flowers.

Mines View Park on the other hand, provides breathtaking views of mountain ranges and Baguio’s “mineral bowl” where gold, silver and other ores were once quarried.

The city is also known for the Panagbenga Festival or the Baguio Flower Festival which is the most colourful event held annually in February. Street parades, floats, costumes and traditional folk dance displays draw huge crowds to Baguio each year.

Photo credits: Martin Galan

Package of the Month

Top


Beautiful Baguio and Banaue

Day 1 - Manila to Baguio City
Depart for the journey through Luzon's central plain to Baguio, the country's summer campital. Take a brief tour of the city which includes Session Road, Burnham Park and the President's summer residence. Overnight and dinner at the El Cielito Inn (or similar) (Dinner inclusive)

Day 2 - Baguio City to Mount Data
Leave Baguio and drive through the La Trinidad Valley to incredible scenic beauty until you reach the lodge at Mt. Data, an enclave among the ancient pine trees in Sinipsip. A drink around the hearth precedes dinner. Overnight at the Lodge. (Breakfast and Dinner inclusive)

Day 3 - Mount Data to Banaue
Depart Mount Data for the journey to the rice terraces and mountainous country of Banaue. Weather permitting, visit the Ifugao burial caves in Sagada and meet the natives. Drive along the winding mountain trail to the town of Bontoc to visit a museum founded by Belgian sisters. Travel through more stunning scenery before arriving in Banaue. Overnight 2 nights at the Banaue Hotel (or similar) (Breakfast and Dinner inclusive)

Day 4 – Banaue
After breakfast at the hotel, board a local jeepney for a ride to the Banga-an local village, accessible after a short hike from the main road. After spending some time in the village, continue to a high vantage point to admire the dramatic scenery of the 2,000 year old rice terraces, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If time permits, visit another village before returning to the hotel. (Breakfast and Dinner inclusive)

Day 5 – Banaue to Manila
Drive down from Banaue, past the town of Bagabag in Nueva Vizcaya, through the Cagayan Valley and then heading south along the expressway until arriving back to Manila in the early evening (Breakfast included)

for inclusions and to inquire click here

DOT News

Top


Londoners applaud “More Fun” campaign


The country’s new tourism slogan, “It’s more fun in the Philippines,” continues to draw attention and take its place on the global stage.

The campaign was recently welcomed with warm reception and overwhelming support in London during its roll-out via double-decker buses, taxi cabs, and underground stations. Twenty-five (25) double-decker buses and fifty (50) iconic black cabs sporting a uniform design of the slogan, logo, and different faces of the Philippines are now spotted around the bustling streets of London. Images of the world-famous Ifugao Rice Terraces and the Puerto Princesa Underground River, both proclaimed as World Heritage Sites, are also found at the subway stations.

“I've seen the bus advertisements a couple of times, as well as the one in the underground, which made me stop and do a double take, as I hadn't seen a Philippine ad in the tube before. I hope that it succeeds in attracting more people to the country,” shares John Oates, contributor to Rough Guides to the Philippines and member of the British Guild of Travel Writers. Mr. Oates looks forward to writing about the Philippines again and plans to visit in June.

With London’s population of about 7.5 million and 15 million international visitors every year, the Philippines is certainly generating awareness not only among the British population, but also among visitors to the United Kingdom (UK). People from various walks of life have expressed their excitement and confidence in the campaign.

“We really love your advertising campaign and we believe it would work fantastically well through our channels. We will be looking out for your advertising campaign in town – on buses, taxis, and in the underground,” exclaimed Weronika Abramowicz, Business Development Head of Fulham Football Club, the oldest established football team of the English Premier League.

Simon Beck, director of Orbital Communications, an integrated sales, marketing, and PR solutions provider to travel brands in the UK, finds the bus ads a really good idea that was executed very well. “I wish you every success with the new campaign. I think it’s so creative...and was telling the Ambassador the same. It’s exciting times ahead for you and I hope I can help support you on this exciting journey,” Mr. Beck enthused.

The Philippine Department of Tourism is the very first national tourism organization to advertise through the taxis’ digital platform owned by Verifone Media. The London cabs come with a 30-minute digital ad which features the 30-seconder “It’s more fun in the Philippines” TVC and 15-seconder tarsier TVC recently launched worldwide via network giant CNN.

Filipinos based in London, who caught a glimpse of the ads, expressed their optimism and full support for DOT’s new campaign. “Absolutely Brilliant! I rode the cab and saw the digital advertisement. It’s very witty, great tag line, and good visuals. It captures the audience because you’re just sitting in there and you will really watch it. Really good marketing campaign. Not just for foreigners, but for Filipinos as well. It reminded me of home,” shares Innah Viray-Lim, a Filipino currently in London as consultant for Shell. After seeing the launch last May, many Filipinos living in the UK also tweeted that they want to have a photo opportunity with the bus and taxi cabs.

Media hype through the London cabs will continue to run until early next year, with the opportunity to capture the millions of visitors and household viewers of the Queen’s Jubilee, the London 2012 Olympics, and the season 2012-2013 of the Fulham Football Club of the English Premier League.

“The world will now start to see that ‘It’s More Fun in the Philippines’ is not just a bunch of words on a streamer. It is a competitive argument for choosing the Philippines as one of the world’s top tourist destinations. Philippine tourism is poised to surge forward as we launch more aggressive initiatives to reinvigorate the industry and work towards achieving our 10M target by 2016,” beamed Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez.

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