PTAA optimistic on tourism arrivals in 2023
BY ED PAOLO SALTING
The Manila Times
THE Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA) is very optimistic on tourism arrivals in 2023 as it expects the sector to surpass current levels. In a press conference on Tuesday, PTAA outgoing president and 30th Travel Tour Expo Chairman Michelle Taylan said they expect the number of international tourists entering the Philippines in 2023 to double from the figure in 2022 because the pandemic has nearly passed. “On our last estimate, we have already hit 1.7 million regarding the number of tourists visiting the Philippines,” Taylan said. “By the end of 2022, we expect that number to hit 2 million and in 2023, the number of visiting tourists will be double that number.” That figure is still below the pre-pandemic level of around 6 to 8 million tourist arrivals annually. However, PTAA President Patty Chiong emphasized that the country be considered as entering the “golden age of tourism” because more people want to travel more despite high prices, and the Philippines is almost totally open to tourists. “For us, it is not about the numbers. It is because more people are insistent on traveling more both here and around the world next year,” Chiong explained. “Despite prices, they are really driven now, and that gives more business opportunities as well.” In relation to this, the PTAA has been doing everything it can to bring in more tourists in the Philippines with its upcoming 30th Travel Tour Expo in 2023. During the event, the association intends to bring in more foot traffic and increase the number of exhibitors from this year by booking the whole SMX Convention Center in Pasay City for the next four years starting next year. Taylan said they plan to invite around 500 exhibitors in the venue and put up 1,000 booths next year, double than compared to 2022. Also, the target is to bring in 80,000 to 100,000 visitors in this year’s expo from 30,000 to 45,000 in foot traffic from just one floor last year. She added PTAA continues to ramp up their activities as tourism and travel continue to recover around the country.