TFC News

DOT launches ‘BBMG’ travel program in U.S.

Rommel Conclara | TFC News San Francisco

Posted at Apr 27 2023 10:25 PM

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The Department of Tourism launched its new travel program “Bisita: Be My Guest” with the first-ever Philippine Travel Fair in Burbank, California.

Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco hopped aboard a Wish USA bus during the event, where she met with Filipino vendors, artists, and travel stakeholders. 

“I’m very grateful to our partners in the travel and tourism industry as well as in aviation,” she said, “who have come in full force to provide our friends, both Filipinos and foreigners, [with] special discounted rates for travel and tour packages to visit the Philippines.”

Frasco said the program will allow Filipinos in the U.S. to invite friends or relatives to visit the country in exchange for incentives including a house, free airline tickets, and trips to holiday destinations. 

The tourism chief added those who invite foreigners to the country can also receive discount cards that can be used in selected establishments. 

The DOT said travelers from the U.S. accounted for the second highest number of tourist arrivals in the Philippines in 2022 at 505,089. 

As of April 2023, some 311,818 Americans had visited the country.

The agency looks to capitalize these figures through Filipinos and Filipino-Americans. 

“Tell the Filipino story to the world,” Frasco said. “Tell them about the good news about the Philippines that it is now the world's leading dive destination, the world's leading beach destination.”

While on the tour, Frasco also visited the California Academy of Science in San Francisco to pitch the program to the Filipino and non-Filipino audience.