Cebu’s tourism players are offering hard-to-resist discounts this summer in a bid to resurrect the industry that has been gravely affected by the pandemic and the super typhoon that damaged a number of properties in December last year.
Over 50 hotels, resorts, restaurants, airlines and tours are offering up to 70 per cent discount in the I Love Cebu Online Travel Sale for bookings made from April 1 to 30. While most deals are valid for a year, some properties are extending validity up to December 31, 2023, said Margie Munsayac, Bluewater Resorts, vice president of marketing and sales.
Lara Constantino Scarrow, director of sales and marketing at Marco Polo Cebu, said that aside from better air, water and land connectivity, Cebu has been able to develop new and existing tourism products such as flower farms, lemon orchard, cafes, adventure tourism in Busay, and experiences of local martial arts called arnis or eskrima. New tourist circuits are also currently being developed.
Since the Philippines’ reopening on February 10 to countries where it has visa-free arrangements, stakeholders expect foreign tourists to return – and more are expected to come after April 1, when borders are reopened to all countries in the world.
Tourism Promotions Board’s COO Maria Anthonette Velasco-Allones reminded industry players about the principle of authenticity as the country returns to tourism business. “Live up to the promise to whatever you are selling….you are also selling your brand which stands for authenticity,” she said.
Velasco-Allones also reminded them about their commitment for accountability so that hygiene and safety protocols such as mask wearing and using temperature scanners and alcohol should not be overlooked to assure tourists of safe and fun travel experiences in the Philippines.