Boracay Island

Boracay groups frown on ‘Bora’ use in tourism campaigns

Jun Aguirre

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Boracay groups frown on ‘Bora’ use in tourism campaigns

ENJOY. Tourists enjoy the sun and the white sand on a beach in Boracay.

Jun Aguirre/Rappler

'Bora' can be confused with Bora Bora in French Polynesia which has similar attractions, points out a Boracay hotel owner

AKLAN, Philippines – Local tourism players and residents of Boracay are frowning over the use of “Bora” in promotional materials and on social media when referring to the resort island.

Gil de los Santos, a Boracay hotel owner, told Rappler on Monday, August 21, that tourists commonly use “Bora” when talking about the island.

“They find convenience by saying ‘Bora’ rather than Boracay,” he said.

But while it is not quite an issue for some, it is for many tourism stakeholders in Boracay who want to establish the island’s distinctness, De Los Santos said.

He said “Bora” can even be confused with Bora Bora in French Polynesia which has similar attractions.

Maylynn Graf, a former Malay town councilor and Boracay resident, has been involved in a social media campaign to urge people to stop using “Bora” whenever they refer to Boracay.

A Facebook page called “Boracay Please not Bora,” has been advocating this. The page has nearly 5,000 members.

“Aside from the tourists, we have also reminded several companies to avoid using ‘Bora’ whenever they promote Boracay,” Graf said.

Data from the Malay Tourism Office showed a total of 94,773 foreign and local tourists coming to Boracay from August 1-15 alone.

Boracay is renowned for its exquisite white sand beaches, pristine waters, and dynamic nightlife. The sought-after tourist spot offers a range of activities including swimming, snorkeling, water sports, and embracing its scenic beauty. 

During the Duterte administration, however, the island went through a major rehabilitation program due to concerns linked to overpopulation and environmental degradation. –

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