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At the recently-conducted session in Delhi, Philippines Tourism Marketing Office, India, kept participants engaged with special focus on Manila and Cebu islands

Philippines Tourism Marketing Office, India, recently conducted a series of trainings for destination managers in the trade, educating them on the unique offerings of the archipelago for all types of travellers, while also elucidating on visa policies for Indian passport holders and encouraging experiential travellers who already have an AJACSSUK visa. The first among these trainings was hosted at The Park, New Delhi; a total of 123 agents marked their presence at the event. Sharing some details, Seema Datt, Account Director, Philippines Tourism Marketing Office, India, said, “This is a series of destination trainings in five different cities, to give an in-depth knowledge to the trade. For instance, if a client were to visit Manila, we would provide the agent details on the attractions there, activities their client can participate in, getting there, etc., thereby helping them make interesting itineraries. Such destination knowledge will equip the trade to revert to all queries their clients may have. Having begun in Delhi, the trainings will move on to Mumbai, Chennai,Ahmedabad, and Kolkata.”

Soft adventures in the Philippines have become very popular with millennials. Datt said that so far, she has seen that the trade is very happy with this new format of in-depth information about the destination. “Since the generic view has been going around in the market for quite some time, everyone knows the Philippines.

Such trainings help them build exclusive itineraries and even minute details about the destination are on their fingertips by the time they walk out of these trainings,” she added. Outbound tourism from India to the Philippines has seen constant rise and has been growing at the rate of 20 per cent a year, which is quite a large number, Datt shared.

The trainings will move on to Mumbai, Chennai, Ahmedabad, and Kolkata


For Rajeev Sabharwal, Chief Executive Officer, Gaurav Travels, the destination attracts a lot of tourists primarily because of its pristine beaches. “There is Bohol, Cebu, Boracay, and even Palawan which has an excellent beach resort,” he shared.

Rajiv Narula, Founder, Managing Director & Chief Operating Officer at The Comforts, said, “There has been a definite change in the mindset of the traveller and in the perception of hospitality as a profession, emphasising on the need to stay updated with the nuances of a destination. This is another reason for us to come and be part of such training programmes.”

Saurabh Tuteja, Joint Secretary — North India Chapter, Enterprising Travel Agent’s Association (ETAA), spoke of the destination as a must-visit for M!CE tourism. “M!CE needs a destination that is completely flexible and also offers nature and nightlife, both fun and ideal places for meetings. In my opinion, the Philippines has everything to offer for M!CE guests,” he said.