To build up and strengthen programs on SmarTourism, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and the Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) Philippines launched, on Wednesday, Virtual Destination Videos and 360° VR Experiential Tours highlighting the country’s top tourist spots and attractions.
SmarTourism is one of the key strategic directions of TPB that aims to integrate innovation and digitalization through strengthening the digital tourism platforms, ensuring data-driven planning, and expanding other tools for promotions and marketing.
“The most distinct driver of change that has happened in any industry is the massive shift towards digitalization and innovation. The virtual tours are a product of our drive to be better and do better amid the trying times. It’s not only a teaser for our foreign guests so they can get a good glimpse of our country in the new normal; it’s also a gift to our kababayans and OFWs who have been wanting to come home. And it’s a way to experience the Philippines vicariously and a guide to making every minute of your travel experience count,” said TPB Chief Operating Officer Maria Anthonette C. Velasco-Allones.
The Virtual Destination Videos support TPB’s marketing programs on domestic welcome-back and global tourism through the “It’s More Fun With You” campaign. Spearheaded by DOT, the campaign invites tourists to look forward to and once again enjoy safe travel after the long break amidst the travel ban. The campaign tonality blends the fun and excitement indicative of Philippine tourism with the warmth and longing of our destinations and travelers to be reunited.
The virtual videos showcase the best-of-the-best in Boracay, Palawan, Baguio/Cordillera, Manila, Pampanga/Zambales, Pangasinan/La Union, Ilocos Norte/Ilocos Sur, Bohol, Cebu, Bukidnon/Camiguin/Cagayan de Oro, Iloilo/Guimaras, Davao, Batangas, Tarlac/ Bataan, and various UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Meanwhile, viewers are treated from the comforts of their homes to a full spectrum of all the tourist spots and activities one can find in the regions of Ilocos and CALABARZON with a web-based 360°virtual reality tour which is accessible via www.tpb.pcitech.com.ph/map.
This web-based 360°virtual reality tour also serves as a marketing tool of the regions to the broader travel industry that will allow travel agents to promote Philippine tourist destinations digitally, and at the same time, enhance and improve their destination knowledge.
“Technology plays an essential role in promoting destinations, attractions, and activities here in our country. By leveraging on it, we have found new opportunities amid the crisis and new ways to tell the world that, hey, the Philippines is alive and well, worthy to see and explore, and remains as beautiful and fun as ever! We are proud that as we finally reopen to the world, we have this in store for all of you to experience,” said DOT Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat during the event.
Furthermore, as the country gears up for its reopening to foreign tourists, the TPB Virtual Tours also serve to spark the general public’s interest so that they may be able to rethink and include the Philippines in their “revenge travel” plans in the long run.