DOT sets 7.7 million target international arrivals for 2024

DOT sets 7.7 million target international arrivals for 2024

MANILA, Philippines — After surpassing its conservative target of international visitors in 2023, the Department of Tourism is increasing its target number of international arrivals to 7.7 million in 2024 — the highest target it has set since the COVID-19 pandemic paused global tourism.

In a release, Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco said that the country is aiming to reach at least 7.7 million international visitors in 2024, which is just half a million lower than the country’s pre-pandemic arrivals of 8.2 million in 2019.

In 2023, the Philippines recorded a total of 5.45 million international visitors, higher than the projected 4.8 million it set for the year. 

South Korea remained the country’s main source of international visitors, making up 26% or over one out of four foreign arrivals. This is followed by the United States (17%), Japan (6%) and Australia (5%).  

Other foreigners who visited the country from other top source markets after China were from Canada, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, Singapore and Malaysia. 

Lockdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 had put a brake in the tourism industry worldwide, and it was only in 2022 that the tourism department in the Philippines resumed setting their target number of foreign arrivals for the year. 

According to the DOT, the Philippines has recovered 66% of its record number of international arrivals in 2019. 

The local tourism industry is also "recovering faster than expected," according to the DOT, which noted that international tourism receipts have "surged" at an estimated P482 billion in 2023. This is 124% higher than the previous year.

Frasco previously said that the Philippines may once again breach the 8 million mark in terms of the number of tourists by 2025. — Cristina Chi

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