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It’s more fun in the Philippines at WTM 2014

The Philippines’ Stand in this year’s World Travel Mart (WTM) is one of the most fun places to visit among the hundreds of exhibitors in this important tourism event to be held at the ExCeL Exhibition Centre in London, United Kingdom on November 3-6, 2014.

In a tactical move to complement its brand tourism campaign, “It’s more fun in the Philippines,” the destination and events-focused theme, “Visit the Philippines Year 2015,” is having its international launch at the 300-square-meter-Philippine Stand in the Asia/Pacific and Indian Ocean Hall (Stand No. AS650) of the ExCel. There are cocktail receptions on Tuesday and Wednesday, November 4 and 5, plus fun-filled activities during the four-day WTM.

Visitors to the Philippine Stand can witness the 800-year-old Dinagyang festival recreated within the halls of ExCel. There will also be exotic cultural performances by the renowned Lahing Kayumanggi Dance Troupe and Grupo Tribale disc jockey and drum beaters. Filipino singers will croon their way to each visitor’s heart. Trained bartenders will share cocktail mixes using home-grown liqueur such as Mango Rum, Manille Calamansi Vodka, Don Papa Rum and others partnered with native Filipino food.

As delightful treats to media and other special guests, a Blogger Expo will let visitors hear first-hand experiences from prominent travel connoisseurs themselves who recently visited the Philippines.  There will be the Mission [email protected] where visitors can join by answering questions about Philippine tourism. Moreover, with heartfelt thanks, the Philippine stand will also devote a chance to recognize the efforts of individuals and groups who supported the victims of Super Typhoon Haiyan.

Scheduled activities within the stand includes a media briefing, signing of agreement with the Student Travel Association Management (STA), presentation of a social media campaign set in five European languages, over-flowing activities that can win you special giveaways and chance to sample a native-Filipino flavoured ice cream thru a special Philippine ice cream  maker.  

Amidst WTM’s ultra-modern marketing and communications features, the Philippines highlights its tourism destinations offering both international standard products and services - with easy access to world-class infrastructure as well as off the beaten track and not overcrowded areas – specifically catering to European holiday-makers.

As the world’s second largest archipelago with more than 7,107 tropical islands in the Asia Pacific, the specific destinations featured this year are pristine Huma Island in Coron-Busuanga/ Palawan, alluring Boracay in Malay/Aklan, historic Cebu and Bohol in the Visayas, refreshing Baler in Aurora, enchanting Camarines Sur in Bicol, delightful Davao-Samal-Camiguin-Siargao-Zamboanga all in Mindanao, the vibrant cities of Metropolitan Manila, and the mesmerizing 2,000-year-old Banaue Rice Terraces, fondly called “Stairways to the Sky”.

“The World Travel Market is clearly an event that matters a lot in terms of generating tourism business for Philippine travel industry partners and creating awareness about the Philippines as a fun tourism destination,” says Domingo Ramon Enerio III, Chief Operating Officer of the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), which is the marketing arm of the Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT). 

“To make an assertive presence at WTM, we are launching our tactical campaign, “Visit the Philippines Year 2015.” We are developing, organizing and shall be promoting a year-round calendar of events and activities that will make international and domestic visitors tour our country and truly experience that ‘It’s more fun in the Philippines.’ These events consist of traditional festivities, commercial events, rural activities and special tourism projects – all integrated into the subject of music/arts, lifestyle/entertainment, history/culture, business/ investment, and adventure/sports/ecotourism,” Enerio adds.

Participation in international travel events are seen both as long-term investment as well as instant exposure for a destination. In the case of WTM, this year’s participation will be a prelude to “Visit the Philippines Year 2015” with the goal of having 10 million international visitors in 2016. 

The Philippine Stand has a power-branding design focusing on these individual destinations with 155 Filipino delegation members ready to provide information on the Philippines and its other activities.  Maximum visibility for the country are being ensured by the Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board Philippines (TPB), and from the participating nine local government units like Camarines Sur and Camiguin as well as 35 private sector partners and other co-exhibitors like Philippine Airlines (PAL), the nation’s flag carrier, and Huma Island Resort and Spa in Palawan.

The DOT and TPB provide participating establishments with optimal presence, mileage and exposure at the trade fair through networking cocktails, promotional materials, giveaways and audio-visual presentations plus advertising and publicity tactics such as digital and print advertising, homepage content banner, Day 1 over wrap at Travel Trade Gazette @WTM dailies, daily full-page ads in [email protected] dailies, tactical ads via outdoor advertising, full bus wrap and digital billboard – boulevard, among others.

Such marketing and communications schemes at WTM 2014 complement the conduct of business-to-business (B2B) meetings and networking appointments at the Philippine Stand of the local travel trade participants with their counterparts from all over the world. Participation in the World Travel Market provides immediate competitive advantage for their travel business by being abreast with the latest developments in the fiercely competitive and highly volatile global travel industry.

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