Philippines receives increasing number of visitors from New Zealand
Based on updates provided by the Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT), there were 15,783 tourists from New Zealand who visited the Philippines in 2013. This represented a growth rate of 11.94% from the previous year. In January 2014, there were 1,425 New Zealanders who came to the Philippines representing a growth rate of 11.07% on a month-on-month basis, which is higher than the overall average of 5.80%. Moreover, DOT data showed that tourists from New Zealand demonstrated high spending capacity of US$92.48 average daily expenditure with an average length of stay of 14.35 nights. It is estimated that they spend an average of about US$1,300 per visit which is higher than the overall average of about US$1,000.
Because of this higher than average growth rate, visitor arrivals from New Zealand continue to be on the upward trend and a positive development in the Philippine Embassy’s continuing tourism promotion drive. “According to some tour operators and travel agents, New Zealanders enjoy the beaches, outdoor adventures, diving, snorkeling, mountain climbing and biking, historical places, cultural sites, health and wellness, culinary attractions and other tourism destinations that the Philippines has to offer. As always, the gracious hospitality, the natural warmth and ready smile of the Filipino people contribute immensely to making the Philippines an attractive tourist destination for New Zealanders. It is heartening to know that they continue to experience and enjoy the richness and variety of our spectacular sights, smells, specialties, shopping, surprises, artistry, vibrancy and creativity,” Ambassador Benavidez said. As many New Zealander visitors have exclaimed “Firstly, the country, the Philippines is GREAT. It’s vibrant and exciting, peaceful and noisy, unspoiled and modern…Yes, all of these things and more. In the Philippines, amazing snorkelling is right outside your door every step of the way. Don't get me started on the turtles in a few feet of water or the whale sharks just off the beach. Every island we visited was greeted with a "WOW", the Philippines really has the Wow factor. The Philippines is a stunning country, the people are amazing, the landscape, beaches, volcanoes, lakes, sulphurous rivers are epic.”
Indeed, the tourism campaign of “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” is catching on, getting to be widely known and increasingly experienced among New Zealanders and other local and foreign visitors and tourists.
The Philippines’ strategic location and easy accessibility in the Asia-Pacific region offer distinct advantages for visitors from New Zealand and other countries.The successful conclusion of the air talks between the Philippines and New Zealand aviation authorities in Wellington on 5-6 March 2014 for amendments to the bilateral Air Services Agreement to allow for increase in the frequency of flights to 21 from 3 flights per week, improvement in the 5th freedom exchange to enable Philippine carriers to operate 5th freedom flights to Australia and New Zealand carriers to operate 5th freedom to China and third country code sharing for the carriers of the Philippines and New Zealand will offer huge opportunities for greater tourism, visitor movements and people-to-people exchanges between the two countries.