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Why it’s more fun at a Philippines event

Traveltalk reports exclusively from Tourism Philippines’ travel agent showcase in Sydney, arguably the most fun trade event of the year.

Bohol resort operators with travel agents


It’s almost impossible to avoid having a good time in the Philippines, as predicted by the country’s longtime tourism tagline, It’s More Fun in the Philippines. 


It’s little wonder then that the Philippine Department of Tourism’s (PDOT) recent national travel agent event and Philippine Business Mission Dinner in Sydneywas enjoyed as much as it was by all in attendance. 


Held at the Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park, the event began with a B2B session between Philippine airlines, hotels and other tourism operators, and travel agents including Flight Centre, Helloworld, and MTA (Mobile Travel Agents) advisors. 


The B2B session


But the real fun was had during the dinner reception, where the Philippines was fully showcased, awesome prizes were awarded via an exciting live online competition, and all participants left as certified Philippines Fun Travel Agents


Using fun as a tool, the event primarily focused on making it easier for agents to sell the Philippines, its plethora of destinations and myriad activities like WWII wreck diving, whale watching, surfing and kayaking the world's longest underground river.


Keynote speaker, Consul-General of the Philippines Ezzedin Tago even placed fun above the country’s renowned hospitality. 


Philippine suppliers taking a bow


It’s really about memories, he said, “whether it’s the colours of the jeepney or the islands like Siargao and Cebu, Palawan”. 


Mr Tago also emphasized the relative closeness of the country, just “a good movie and five-hour nap” away from Australia.”


It seems like the message is getting through to the Aussie public too, with tourist numbers from Australia rising from around 240,000 in 2015 to over 280,000 last year.


Philippine DOT Australia and NZ tourism attache Norjamin Delos Reyes (l) with Consul-General of the Philippines Ezzedin Tago


"With over 7,000 stunning islands, many World Heritage listed sites, and the friendliest people in Asia, the popularity of travel to the Philippines has seen unprecedented growth in recent years, especially amongst travellers looking for new destinations and unique travel experiences,” Philippine Department of Tourism Australia and New Zealand tourism attache Norjamin Delos Reyes said.


“Agents are essential to the continued growth in travel to the region and these events are the next step in our evolving strategy to help agents confidently sell the Philippines to their customers." 


Traveltalk provided exclusive media coverage from the event, which was emceed by TV personality James Tobin.


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Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 4 October 2019

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