Philippine tourism

Beaches, fewer crowds top 2021 travel choices among Filipinos – Airbnb

Aika Rey

TOP DESTINATION. Boracay Island is open for tourism.

File photo by Adrian Portugal/Rappler

6 in 10 Filipinos prioritize family vacations, with a preference for 'less crowded, off-the-beaten path' destinations

A year into quarantine restrictions, Filipinos are itching for vacations – but in spots with health and safety protocols in place.

A survey commissioned by rental platform Airbnb, which polled 1,067 Filipinos from February 4 to 8, showed that 6 in 10 prioritized family vacations, with a preference for “less crowded, off-the-beaten path” destinations.

Airbnb general manager for Southeast Asia, India, Hongkong, and Taiwan Amanpreet Bajaj said that the latest travel survey showed Filipinos are looking for slower, more mindful vacations to reconnect with nature.

“We believe that travel is resilient and will bounce back with time, and we anticipate that unique and family-friendly travel will serve as the impetus for domestic tourist recovery,” Bajaj said.

For their first trip after the pandemic, a destination close to nature garnered the most responses at 47%. The top 5 destinations for Filipinos this year included Boracay, Palawan, Baguio, Siargao Island, and Tagaytay.

At least 60% of the respondents said they wanted to reconnect with their immediate and extended families for vacation, while only 5% didn’t want to travel this year.

Filipinos also remained mindful of their expenses, with affordability ranking second to health and safety protocols as top considerations in choosing lodgings.

Airbnb partnered with global analytics firm YouGov for the survey.

The pandemic gutted the Philippine tourism industry as the country barred foreign travelers. The Department of Tourism has so far encouraged domestic travel to drive recovery, gradually opening more tourist hotspots up to Filipinos. –

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Aika Rey

Aika Rey is a business reporter for Rappler. She covered the Senate of the Philippines before fully diving into numbers and companies. Got tips? Find her on Twitter at @reyaika or shoot her an email at