DOT targeting European tourists

By Danny Buenafe, ABS-CBN Europe News Bureau

Posted at Mar 14 2012 01:28 PM | Updated as of Mar 15 2012 12:22 AM

BERLIN, Germany - Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez is confident it will be a record-breaking year for the tourism industry in the Philippines.

Jimenez was all smiles as he led a Philippine delegation at the international tourism fair in Berlin, the biggest tourism showcase in the world.

More tha a hundred countries, including war-torn Iraq, took part in the 4-day tourism event.

For the first time, the Department of Tourism introduced its new campaign slogan "It's More Fun in the Philippines."

"Ang salitang 'fun' yan ang panukat natin sa lahat ng inaalok sa mga turista. Basta fun, inaalok natin sa kanila yun," Jimenez said.

Jimenez is targeting a 21% increase in European tourist arrivals this year, especially German and British tourists.

He said a single European tourist is the equivalent of 4 Koreans in terms of spending power for their holidays.

"Talagang ngayon pa lang kinukulit ko na kayo na planuhin niyo na ang inyong Christmas vacation dahil handang-handa na ang inyong airport at excited kaming makita kayo ngayon Pasko," Jimenez said.

Because of the aggressive marketing campaign, Jimenez is hopeful that the country's international airports will be increased by 10 in two years.

He bared that by the end of this year, 85% of the renovation work at NAIA 1 will be completed.

By the end of the President's term in 2016, Jimenez is confident that tourist arrivals shall have reached the 10-million mark.