Domestic tourism increased in 2021: DOT

The number of domestic tourism trips increased in 2021 compared to the previous year, signaling the gradual revival of the industry fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to data from the Department of Tourism (DOT), the number of domestic tourism trips increased by almost 40 percent in 2021-in conjunction with the easing of COVID-19 lockdowns compared to 2020, which was the first year of the pandemic.


The agency recorded 37,279,282 trips in 2021 while only 26,982,233 trips in 2020.

National Capital Region is the number one overnight destination for local tourists, followed by neighboring Calabarzon and Central Luzon regions.

According to the DOT, foreign arrivals will drop by almost 89 percent in 2021 because the Philippine border is not yet open, and admission is still tight.


The United States is the top market in 2021, followed by Japan, China, India, and Canada. Former top market Soth Korea fell to the top 6.

The DOT hopes to see better numbers this year, especially since international travelers have no more requirements.

Domestic tourism increased in 2021: DOT

According to incoming Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco, the agency’s leadership is now in the midst of a transition.


She left President-elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr. the country’s future direction in tourism, including health travel protocols.

“I do not wish to question the policies of the national government nor do I wish to impose on the wisdom of the incoming administration, and I defer to the wisdom of both the current and the incoming administration as far as the maintenance or liberalization of health protocols is concerned,” said Frasco.

“I only wish to bring to the attention of the necessary decision makers, the necessity of balancing life and livelihood and examining closely the health and safety protocols that will serve best the preservation of not just life but also the economy,” she added.

There are more than 4 million workers in the tourism industry in the Philippines.

These include the rickshaw driver in Intramuros, Manila, Cyrill John Sunga, who is happy with the revival of their sector because they are somehow recovering in the face of rising commodity prices.

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