By Philippine News Agency
The Department of Tourism (DOT) hopes to capture at least one million of Asia’s young population to visit Mindanao with its intensified tourism campaign starting next year.
Tourism Secretary Wanda Teo is looking at China as the major market for young travelers. She said that during her visit to China, the tourism sector committed to bring in more tourists although there is still a need for Mindanao to develop more destinations and rooms to cater to a big market.
DOT noted that in regional travels – 60 percent of the world’s millennials are in Asia and 25 percent of that comprises Asia’s population. This accounts for 35 percent or USD210 billion of the USD600 billion in tourism spending. By 2020, it is seen to increase USD340 billion.
Teo said DOT’s tourism selling campaign is towards Mindanao because it has been left out for several years. She cited that at a recent tourism event there was little information about Mindanao, not even a brochure about Davao was included in the event.
Despite the lack of a promotion campaign for Mindanao in the past, Teo was optimistic that the island would capture the foreign market. She said it is not only about visit but also capturing Chinese investors to build tourism infrastructure.
According to her, the Chinese are very specific on seeing more hotels and theme parks.
Earlier, Jazmin Esguerra, a consultant of DOT-Mindanao announced that the tourism industry players of Davao and Mindanao are fine-tuning products and packages aimed at enticing Chinese and other tourists to visit Mindanao.
Esguerra, who served for ten years as Philippine Tourism Attaché to Beijing, said Davao should find its own niche and not to compete with other destinations Boracay.
She advised the Mindanao tourism players to do branding and know your market. She said, “You can tweak a little but be sure to showcase only the best of what you have.”
Esguerra said that in 2015 about 120 million Chinese traveled out of China with total outbound expenditures of USD 194 billion. The rising disposable income levels among consumers, the continuous development of transportation networks in China including more direct flights, increased exposure to the outside world through new technology sparked the increase.
She said there are 400 countries that would want Chinese tourists to visit their countries. The top outbound destinations last year were South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Finance, Italy, Switzerland, Macau, and Germany.
In 2014, the top outbound destinations were Hong Kong, Thailand, South Korea, Taiwan, Macau, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, and France.
The expenditures of these tourists include shopping with 57.75 percent, accommodations, 17.82 percent, transport, 10.88 percent, food, 5.84 percent, entertainment, 3.72 percent, attraction tickets, 3.72 percent, and tips, 0.13 percent.
She said most of the Chinese tourists come to Asian countries like the Philippines for a beach holiday and they usually splurge on local delicacies and foodstuff, souvenirs and crafts, cosmetics, make-up and perfumes, fashionable clothing, digital and electronic products, leather goods, house goods and furniture.
Most of these tourists are internet savvy as 56.1 percent of these travelers are in their 20s, while 26.41 percent are in the 30 years of age category, 58.25 percent are married and travel with their children, 15.30 percent are married and childless, while 20.26 percent are single.