DOT, TPB Push for Smart Tourism in the Philippines
Through the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), the Department of Tourism (DOT) continues to support local government units (LGUs) by funding their digital transformation projects as part of its efforts to push for smart tourism in the country.
The TPB, as of June 2021, has downloaded a total of Php 111.65 million to local government units for various projects, including the development of the Visitor Information and Travel Assistance (VIS.I.T.A.) platform, an online visitor management and monitoring system; local tourism websites; mobile applications; and digital marketing tools.
“Digital innovations are playing a crucial role in the recovery of the tourism industry. Not only do they improve the efficiency of business operations, and promotions, they also allow for a safer environment through contactless transactions, virtual meetings, and visitor registration and monitoring,” said Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat.
Blood Compact Shrine, Bohol
With Baguio City having led the development and deployment of the VIS.I.T.A. app in October 2020, recipients of this now include the regions of Ilocos and Pangasinan, Central and Eastern Visayas, Northern Mindanao, Metro Manila, and the provinces of Bohol, Marinduque, Oriental Mindoro, Quirino and Zambales, and the cities of Bacolod, Davao, Dumaguete, Iloilo, Tuguegarao, and the municipalities of Agoncillo, El Nido and Pasil.
A recent output of the funding is the launch of Oriental Mindoro’s tourism website and mobile application “Lakbay Oriental Mindoro” last July 8 as a digital travel guide to the province’s 14 municipalities.
Apart from introducing the much-needed digital tools for tourism, the DOT previously subsidized 50 percent of the RT-PCR testing cost for qualified local tourists through a partnership with the Philippine Children’s Medical Center (PCMC) and the University of the Philippines-Philippine General Hospital (UP-PGH).
El Nido, Palawan
The TPB funding also extends to programs that uphold sustainable initiatives and responsible travel, such as community immersion and interaction which are non-exploitative and not staged; slow food, slow travel concept providing added value to travelers, farm-to-table activities, and health and wellness activities.
Source: Department of Tourism