The Philippines is on track to surpass its tourism target for 2023, as it welcomed almost 4 million international visitors from January to September 19, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT).
The figure represents a 12.7% increase from the same period last year, when the country received 3.5 million foreign tourists.
The DOT also reported that tourism revenues reached PHP316.9 billion in the first nine months of 2023, up by 15.3% from PHP274.9 billion in 2020.
Tourism Secretary Cristina Garcia Frasco attributed the growth to the government’s efforts to promote the country’s diverse attractions, improve infrastructure and connectivity, and implement health and safety protocols amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We are optimistic that we can achieve our target of 4.8 million international arrivals for the full year of 2023, which would be a new record for Philippine tourism,” Garcia said in a statement.
“We are grateful to our partners in the public and private sectors, as well as our local and foreign tourists, for their continued support and confidence in our destination.”
Among the top source markets for Philippine tourism, Korea remained the number one contributor with over a million arrivals, accounting for 25.8% of the total. Japan and the United States followed with 597,111 and 596,418 visitors, respectively. China, Taiwan, Australia, Canada, United Kingdom, Singapore, and Germany completed the top 10 markets.
The DOT also noted that the average length of stay of foreign tourists increased from 8.8 days in 2020 to 9.5 days in 2023, while the average daily expenditure rose from PHP5,240 to PHP5,710.
Frasco said that these indicators show that the Philippines is becoming more attractive and competitive as a tourism destination in the region.
“We are confident that we can sustain this momentum and even surpass our previous achievements as we prepare for the reopening of more destinations and the resumption of international flights in the coming months,” she said. “We invite everyone to rediscover the beauty and diversity of our islands, and experience the warmth and hospitality of our people.”