The government has launched a new part of the Smart Tourism Programme as a part of the recovery plan for the tourism sector in the home to the Puerto Princesa Underground River, one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature. 


The programme’s main objective is to support tourist destinations by funding their digital transformation projects -such as contactless transactions- as a way to promote “smart tourism”, as the result of a joint work between the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB).


According to the Tourism Secretary, Berna Romulo-Puyat, “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”.


The Department of Tourism’s financial aid also goes to programs that promote sustainable tourism, such as community immersion and interaction that are non-exploitative and not staged, slow food-slow travel, farm-to-table activities, and health and wellness activities.