tourism - updates

Rappler's latest stories on tourism

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'It's More Fun in the Philippines' gets new font

Feb 18, 2019 - 5:50 PM

The Department of Tourism launches a custom-made font called Barabara, inspired by lettering seen on jeepneys

MORE FUN. The Department of Tourism keeps the 'It's More Fun in the Philippines' campaign for 2019. Photo from the Department of Tourism

Hotel groups hail new offensive on Airbnb in Paris

Feb 12, 2019 - 9:37 AM

Paris city authorities demand a fine of 12.5 million euros ($14 million) against Airbnb for 1,000 properties without a registration number that were identified by local officials

AIRBNB. Photo by Frazer Harrison/AFP


Philippines' 'more fun' slogan in 2019 to focus on sustainable tourism

Jan 25, 2019 - 6:42 PM

The Philippines will be marketed as 'one of the pioneering countries for sustainable tourism,' the Department of Tourism says

SUSTAINABLE. The Department of Tourism says the campaign slogan will still be retained but will be focused on sustainable tourism. Screengrab from YouTube/DOT Philippines

PH tourism breaks record, hits 7.1 million | Midday wRap

Jan 25, 2019 - 1:32 PM

Watch Rappler’s Midday newscast with Marguerite de Leon

Philippines breaks tourism record in 2018 despite Boracay closure

Jan 24, 2019 - 8:10 PM

South Korea remains the top source market, while China is the 'most improved' as it overtakes the United States for the second spot

SURFING SPOT. La Union is considered as a top surfing spot in Luzon. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler

Who is Miss Tourism World Intercontinental Francesca Taruc?

Jan 14, 2019 - 9:44 AM

Here are a few things about the new titleholder from the Philippines

Taiwan rebuffs China tourist snub with record 2018 arrivals

Dec 31, 2018 - 2:37 PM

The 11 millionth visitor, a Japanese doctor, arrived Sunday, December 30 in what Taiwan's tourism bureau described as 'a new landmark'

GAINS. Despite China staying away, Taipei sees a boost in tourism. File photo by Mandy Cheng/AFP

Duterte reacts to Ressa’s Time cover | Midday wRap

Dec 14, 2018 - 1:35 PM

Watch Rappler's midday wRap with Ralf Rivas

WATCH: Catriona Gray showcases PH's rich heritage in new video

Dec 09, 2018 - 1:45 PM

From the Philippines to the Universe, Catriona presents 'This is the Philippines'

CHRISTMAS PAROL. Catriona Gray shows Luzon's culture in the video 'This is The Philippines.' All screenshots from YouTube/Cat'elle

El Nido rehab to focus on water quality, coastal easement, carrying capacity

Nov 30, 2018 - 9:00 AM

President Duterte's environment, tourism, and interior secretaries assure the residents of this Palawan town there will be ‘no closure but only rehab’

NO CLOSURE. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources says the tourism town of El Nido will be rehabilitated in 6 months. Photo courtsey of Department of Tourism

DENR, DILG, DOT chiefs to map out El Nido rehabilitation plan

Nov 27, 2018 - 6:40 PM

Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, and Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat will be in El Nido town on November 28 to meet with local officials

EL NIDO. El Nido, Palawan, will undergo rehabilitation but will not be temporarily closed to tourists. By Firth m - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

After criticism, no more balloon releasing in next Mimaropa Festival

Nov 18, 2018 - 6:51 PM

Mimaropa's top tourism official thanks EcoWaste Coalition for pointing out that releasing balloons is harmful to the environment

Photo from the Arawatan & Mimaropa Festival 2018 Facebook page

Thai authorities retrieve ship after fatal Phuket capsizing

Nov 17, 2018 - 11:03 PM

More than 4 months after the tragic incident, Thai authorities were able to retrieve the Phoenix using a 1,000-ton crane ship hired from Singapore

RECOVERING THE DEAD. Thai rescue personnel transfer a body (C) at the Chalong pier in Phuket on July 6, 2018. File photo by Mohd Rasfan/AFP

Duterte to Palawan hotels, resorts: 'Follow rules' to avoid another Boracay

Nov 11, 2018 - 12:20 AM

'I'm putting on notice everybody,' President Rodrigo Duterte says in a speech at a festival in Puerto Princesa City

UNDERGROUND RIVER. The entrance to the Puerto Princesa Underground River, June 21, 2011. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia/Mike Gonzalez.

El Nido to resolve overcrowding in Small, Big Lagoons

Nov 09, 2018 - 9:01 AM

Local officials hold a dry run of a proposal to limit the number of tourists and kayaks that can enter the lagoons

INFOGRAPHIC: Chase the thrill in Singapore this October 2018

Oct 12, 2018 - 2:00 PM

This month, two heart-pumping events await thrill seekers in the Lion City

JICA opens agri-business, tourism training in Okinawa for young Filipinos

Oct 08, 2018 - 6:47 PM

PRESS RELEASE: The course will run from February 7-23, 2019 and application is open until October 31, 2018

Children in Boracay still vulnerable to sexual exploitation

Oct 07, 2018 - 12:53 PM

Child safety watchdog ECPAT Philippines urges Malay officials to ensure that 'child protection mechanisms are in place and functioning' when Boracay reopens to tourists on October 26

BORACAY SUNSET. Children watch the sunset in famed Boracay island. Children in tourist destinations are vulnerable to child sex tourism. File photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

La Union beyond surfing

Oct 07, 2018 - 11:37 AM

Know more about Luna town's picturesque pebble beaches and hidden charms

SEASIDE ART. Artwork face the sea. Photo courtesy of Laurie Mae Gucilatar, Joms Santos and Eleazar Cuela

Mark Ong: Marching to his own beat and succeeding

Sep 28, 2018 - 1:27 PM

Fueled by passion and a no-nonsense, go-getter attitude, Mark Ong was able to do the things he loves most while building a homegrown brand now known around the world

LOOK: 'Largest wedding cake' in Baguio City

Sep 22, 2018 - 4:23 PM

Around 43 couples at a government-sponsored mass wedding are among the first to sample the 24-foot wedding cake

GIANT WEDDING CAKE. Newly-weds who were part of a mass wedding surround a giant wedding cake in Baguio City on September 22, 2018. All photos by Mau Victa/Rappler

SpaceX announces new plan to send tourist around moon

Sep 14, 2018 - 11:42 AM

Humans have not set foot on the moon since the final Apollo mission in 1972, capping an era of US national pride. Only 24 people in history have ever been to the moon.

DRAGON AND FALCON. A multiple exposure photo showing the trail of the Dragon spacecraft as it lifts off, with the Falcon 9 rocket's trail as it landed, at Cape Canaveral, Florida, July 18, 2016. File photo courtesy SpaceX

Full Boracay rehab by December 2019, says DOT chief

Sep 13, 2018 - 3:20 PM

Tourism officials have asked airlines to reduce flights to Caticlan and Kalibo in Aklan, since Boracay can only accommodate a limited number of tourists per day

BORACAY. Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat says Boracay rehabilitation will be completed next year. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Philippines' Zara Carbonell wins Miss Tourism Worldwide 2018

Sep 09, 2018 - 8:23 PM

Zara wins the inaugural pageant held in Indonesia

Gov't approves permits to operate of 25 Boracay hotels, resorts

Sep 01, 2018 - 3:51 PM

The Boracay Inter-Agency Task Force is implementing a 'No Compliance, No Opening' policy to ensure that establishments follow rules and regulations

HOTELS. The Department of Tourism releases a list of accredited accommodation establishments in Boracay. Photo from Fairways and Bluewater Beach Resort

Marina gives extra push promoting PH cruise shipping tourism

Aug 30, 2018 - 2:59 PM

Despite advocating promotion of cruise shipping industry, the Maritime Industry Authority assures that it will be 'uncompromising' in enforcing strict policies for accreditation

Photo by Alecs Ongcal

DENR to Boracay businesses: Stop dealing with fixers, impostors

Aug 24, 2018 - 9:59 AM

Environment officials urge business owners or authorized representatives to personally process their certifications, business permits, and clearances at the one-stop shop in Boracay

BORACAY BUSINESSES. Boracay Island has temporarily closed down last April 26 to give way for its rehabilitation. Government plans to reopen it in October. File photo by Adrian Portugal/Rappler

One-stop shop for Boracay businesses gets 2-week extension

Aug 23, 2018 - 7:35 PM

The one-stop shop will now be open until September 7 instead of the initial August 25 deadline

CLOSED DOWN. Almost all establishments along Boracay's beachfront have closed down. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler


Ben Tulfo on P60-M ad deal: PTV still owes us money

Aug 14, 2018 - 5:01 PM

Tulfo refuses to answer how much the government owes his production company Bitag Media

UNPAID. Bitag Media CEO Ben Tulfo says his contract with PTV4 is valid. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Tulfos: We will not return P60M to government

Aug 14, 2018 - 2:42 PM

'Wala ho sa isip ko magsasauli kasi wala akong ginawang ilegal. Papanindigan po namin ang kontrata, legal po ito. Wala po kaming ginawang illegal,' says Ben Tulfo during a Senate hearing

Photo by Angie de Silva

LIVE: Senate hearing on Tulfo's P60-M earnings from DOT ad placements

Aug 14, 2018 - 2:00 PM

Watch the hearing on Tuesday, August 14, at 10 am

Visayas, Mindanao airports get P2B in proposed 2019 budget

Aug 12, 2018 - 7:15 AM

The new Bohol International Airport receives the biggest chunk at P754 million

NEW AIRPORT. The new Bohol (Panglao) International Airport is almost complete. Photo from the Build Build Build Facebook page

P7.8M in 2019 national budget to be used in tourism safety

Aug 08, 2018 - 3:45 PM

Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat also pledges to put up health facilities in tourist destinations in coordination with the Department of Health

DOT BUDGET. Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat on August 8, 2018 defends the DOT budget at the House committee on appropriations hearing. Photo by Darren Langit/Rappler

PH vows to boost tourist safety after jellyfish kills girl

Aug 05, 2018 - 3:50 PM

Filipino-Italian swimmer Gaia Trimarchi, 7, dies after being stung by a box jellyfish in Caramoan, Camarines Sur

TOURIST SAFETY. A file photo of Sabitang Laya Island in Caramoan, where a 7-year-old girl died after she was stung by a box jellyfish. Photo by LeAnne Jazul/Rappler

Legal process continues despite Ben Tulfo refusal to return P60M – Roque

Jul 30, 2018 - 1:35 PM

The Tulfos are supposed to return the payment because of a Commission on Audit notice of disallowance, but this can still be appealed

COA finds Montano’s P12M contracts questionable

Jul 26, 2018 - 1:22 PM

Montano approves the contracts for Intramuros and a music festival without a go-signal from the board, and in one instance, he disregards approval of the winning bidder and negotiates directly with the losing bidder instead

QUESTIONABLE CONTRACTS. Cesar Montano's contracts with performers and music festival organizers in 2017 are flagged by auditors for violating procurement and Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) rules. File photo by Rob Reyes/Rappler


Cesar Montano's travels excessive – COA

Jul 26, 2018 - 11:24 AM

Auditors say it was costly and unnecessary for Montano to bring along his two assistants in most of his trips. Non-related personnel also got to travel to tourism events.

EXCESSIVE TRAVELS. The Commission on Audit (COA) flags as excessive the travels of resigned Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Chief Operating Officer Cesar Montano. Photo from Cesar Montano - TPB page

Philippines hits 3.7 million foreign tourists mid-2018

Jul 19, 2018 - 6:45 PM

Foreign tourist arrivals increase by 10.4%, compared to the 3.3 million recorded for the January-June period last year

TOURIST ARRIVALS. Foreign tourists pass health declaration checklist in NAIA. File photo by Jedwin Llobrera/Rappler

Call for proposals: DOT tourism research grant

Jul 19, 2018 - 2:43 PM

PRESS RELEASE: Deadline for applications is on July 31, Tuesday

Photo by Naveen Ganglani/Rappler

First space tourist flights could come in 2019

Jul 16, 2018 - 2:10 PM

Got $250,000? Virgin Atlantic, one of the companies paving the way for space tourism, can take you to space for that price

SPACE JET. This May 29, 2018 handout photograph obtained courtesy of Virgin Galactic shows the Virgin Spaceship (VSS) Unity.  The two companies leading the pack in the pursuit of space tourism say they are just months away from their first out-of-this-world passenger flights – though neither has set a firm date. Virgin Galactic, founded by British billionaire Richard Branson, and Blue Origin, by Amazon creator Jeff Bezos, are racing to be the first to finish their tests – with both companies using radically different technology. AFP Photo/Virgin Galactic


Is Unesco World Heritage status for cultural sites killing the things it loves?

Jul 14, 2018 - 10:00 AM

Achieving Unesco status is an internationally competitive process. Nations want this recognition because they can promote a place or practice as a unique cultural tourism attraction.

TOURIST MAGNET. Tourists take a photo of sunrise at Angkor Wat in 2016. Shutterstock

More fun? Inefficiencies in Teo’s DOT term raise audit red flags

Jul 12, 2018 - 8:53 PM

The 2017 audit report of the Department of Tourism (DOT) is rife with delayed projects, deficient planning and multi-million projects that went unmonitored and cannot be measured for their worth

AUDIT RED FLAGS. Commission on Audit (COA) reveals multiple deficiencies and inefficiencies in how the Department of Tourism spent P2 billion of its budget in 2017 under the leadership of former secretary Wanda Teo.

COA flags P19 million travel allowances of DOT officials

Jul 12, 2018 - 10:58 AM

(UPDATED) The department spent P19.2 million on travel allowances alone in 2017, including P863,961 for resigned secretary Wanda Teo

TRAVEL ALLOWANCES. Department of Tourism officials including resigned secretary Wanda Teo, and current Undersecretaries Kat De Castro and Benito Bengzon receive hundreds of thousands worth of allowances for their foreign travels in 2017, according to the Commission on Audit.

Gov't should focus on increasing tourism revenues, not arrivals – expert

Jul 10, 2018 - 8:25 PM

'It doesn't matter how many people come, [but] what's important is that you get the target revenue,' says Fernando Martin Roxas

SUSTAINABLE TOURISM. Fernando Martin Roxas, Executive Director of Asian Institute of Management Dr. Andrew L. Tan Center for Tourism, talks to the media about sustainable tourism. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler

IN NUMBERS: Foreign visitors up by 10% despite Boracay closure

Jul 06, 2018 - 6:46 PM

The Department of Tourism says foreign visitor arrivals still grew in May despite the closure of Boracay as they went to other destinations in the country

SIARGAO. Sugba Lagoon, a popular destination for those who visit Siargao.Photo by Naveen Ganglani/Rappler

PH eyes shorter visa on arrival process for Chinese travelers

Jul 05, 2018 - 2:26 PM

The Department of Tourism says it is looking at major markets China and India for its plan to facilitate easier entry to the country

TOURISM. Department of Tourism spokesperson Bong Bengzon speaks to hotel owners and marketing representatives in Makati City on July 5, 2018. Photo by Aika Rey/Rappler

Binay seeks to stop misuse of Duty Free funds amid Teo controversy

Jul 01, 2018 - 9:50 PM

Senator Nancy Binay says the Governance Commission for GOCCs should 'take seriously' its job to coordinate policies of government corporations

ACCOUNTABILITY. Senator Nancy Binay, chairman of the Senate committee on tourism, said the Governance Corporation for Government Owned and Controlled Corporations needs to strengthen its fiscal practices over the Comission on Audit's findings on the misuse of Duty Free funds. Photo from the Office of Senator Nany Binay

COA: Teo illegally used Duty Free tourism funds to buy bags, cosmetics

Jun 28, 2018 - 1:05 PM

Merchandise bought using Department of Tourism funds include beddings, appliances, canned goods, branded bags, luxury brand cosmetics, and chocolates

DUTY FREE. Resigned tourism secretary Wanda Teo used DOT profit shares at Duty Free to buy merchandise and pay for a consultant according to the Commission on Audit. Photo by Mick Basa/Rappler

The rockets that are pushing the boundaries of space travel

Jun 27, 2018 - 3:26 PM

Today, NASA is so dependent on the private sector that the US space agency has signed contracts with SpaceX and Boeing to send astronauts to space beginning next year, as soon as their capsules are ready

New York's Central Park goes officially car-free

Jun 27, 2018 - 10:56 AM

'For more than a century, we had turned parts of the world's most iconic park into a highway – and starting tonight, we have officially taken it back for good,' says Mayor Bill de Blasio

GREEN SPACE. People ride bicycles on West Drive in the southern portion of Central Park, April 20, 2018 in New York City. File photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images/AFP