Looking for your next local destination? If you need some ideas and a bit of inspiration for the holidays, head to the 34th Philippine Travel Mart from 1 to 3 Sep 2023 at the SMX Convention Centre Manila, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City. Not only are you bound to find amazing tours and deals at the travel fair, but there are also new packages to emerging destinations such as the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region and the Spratly Islands. Frequent travellers, this is your chance to see that there’s really no running out of places to explore in the Philippines!
What to expect at the Philippine Travel Mart
Organised by the Philippine Tour Operators Association (PHILTOA), the Philippine Travel Mart is the biggest and longest-running annual tourism fair focused on promoting popular and upcoming tourist spots in the country. With nearly 200 exhibitors from all 17 regions of the Philippines, the event brings together hotels, resorts, travel agencies, airlines, tour operators, and tourism offices under one roof.
The one-stop setup means it’s easy for you to scope out vacation packages from Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao — everything is on hand, after all! Plus, visitors of the Philippine Travel Mart can grab discounts and deals available only for on-the-spot bookings.
“It’s still the domestic market that is driving tourism in the country,” said PHILTOA 1st Vice President, Mary Ann Ong, adding that there’s a strong demand for tours to popular destinations like Boracay and Palawan. “What the PHILTOA is trying to achieve by way of this fair is to entice Filipinos to discover hidden gems such as the Zamboanga Peninsula, Quirino, and SOCCSKARGEN. These are just some of the places that are under the radar but deserve to be explored, appreciated, and enjoyed.”
Emerging destinations take the spotlight
Highlights of the Philippine Travel Mart include tour packages to largely unexplored destinations in the archipelago. Sure, Baguio and Boracay remain top-of-mind for domestic summer trips. But for adventurous travellers ready for something new, the country still has a few hidden gems up its sleeves!
For one, the Spratly Islands. Does sailing to Kalayaan, Palawan sound like your kind of activity? Although it’s an off-grid destination, Kalayaan is a beautiful part of the famously contentious archipelago? Chartered expeditions organised by the Kalayaan Tourism Development Centre will take travellers to the West Philippine Sea. The 7D6N expedition will kick off in Puerto Princesa, then cruise to five destinations, including Lawak Island, Patag Island, and the famous Pag-asa Island as the tour highlights.
Meanwhile, the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) also awaits! The region comprising Basilan, Sulu, Lanao del Sur, Maguindanao del Sur, and Maguindanao del Norte will have their own pavilion. Here, find tour packages highlighting the region’s unspoiled beaches, exotic food, and distinct architecture.
Take time to visit the Philippine Travel Mart at the SMX Convention Center Manila, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City. Who knows? You just might find your next bucket-list destination! The entrance fee is ₱50 per attendee per day. A discounted rate of ₱40 is also available for students, senior citizens, and PWD. See you there? For more information, visit the Philippine Travel Mart official website.
Information and images extracted from a press release by Philippine Travel Mart.