The Department of Tourism (DOT) is pushing for a recalibration of Philippine tourism campaign by focusing more on what it describes as a “Filipino Brand” in order to leave a good and lasting impression when foreign tourists visit the country.

DOT Sec. Christina Garcia-Frasco explained they want to begin in the country’s gateways by highlighting a “distinctly Filipino” atmosphere in main airports and seaports.

“The DOT envisions improving existing facilities in both airports and seaports by introducing enhancements that will make the ports more aesthetically pleasing, convenient, tourist-friendly, and most importantly, reflective of the ‘Filipino Brand’,” said Frasco.

“Aside from improving convenience to travelers and tourists, the DOT also looks at putting a ‘Filipino Brand’ to our ports, a good image of the Philippines that would remain in the memories of visitors to the country before touring different destinations in the Philippines and long after they have left,” she added.

According to the DOT chief,  the installation of signages in airports and seaports takes part in these enhancements, as well as the use of lighting, backdrop, and furniture that will distinctly reflect the new brand of tourism campaign.

Frasco said they are looking at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport Terminal 2, Davao International Airport, and Cebu City Pier 1 as pilot projects. Frasco already met with Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Jaime J. Bautista to map out the creation of Technical Working Group that will supervise the improvement of the country’s airports and sea ports to be led by the Department of Tourism (DOT) with the support of DOTr.

During the meeting, Frasco also recommended a one-stop-shop for land, air, and sea connectivity along with the need to enhance barrier-free tourism in the country. This includes appropriate facilities in gateways and transport hubs for people with disabilities (PWDs), such as elevators with PWD-friendly features, clearly designated PWD parking slots, and check-in counters with low and recessed or split-level counters that can accommodate persons seated on wheelchairs.

Meanwhile, due to travel conditions and demands, the two departments also raised the possibility of re-opening pre-pandemic domestic and international routes so as to to minimize traffic in major ports. They also proposed the opening of new routes given the positive developments in travel conditions and demand.

In this line, Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco also noted that the country’s tourism slogan will be enhanced to be more reflective of the Filipino brand. Frasco said the current slogan “It’s more fun in the Philippines” is under review. “The plan is to enhance the present slogan of the DOT so as to be able to maximize our cultural strength and identity that would be fully reflective of the Filipino brand,” Frasco declared.