The Philippines: The Next Must-Visit Destination for Israelis

Palawana

Palawan - Condé Nast Traveler's Best Island Destination in the World 2014
(Photo courtesy of the Department of Tourism)


20 November 2014, Tel Aviv, State of Israel – Four Israeli news and travel companies recently featured the Philippines in their websites, referring to it as the next new destination for Israeli travelers to visit. Their write-ups, which were simultaneously published in Hebrew online in late October, highlighted the country's beautiful nature, especially the inclusion of Palawan and Boracay in Condé Nast Traveler's "30 Best Islands in the World" in 2014. At the conclusion of the online poll, Palawan emerged as the winner with more than 76,000 votes, while Boracay got the 12th place.

With these two sites and other natural wonders found across the Philippines, the articles released by News1 (http://www.news1.co.il), Walla (http://travel.walla.co.il), Terminal (http://www.terminal.org.il), and International Air Services (http://www.ias.co.il) said that the country is becoming a favorite destination among Israelis. They noted the significant increase in Israeli tourists to the country based on Department of Tourism data, partly attributing the development to the collaborative efforts between the Embassy and Israel-Philippine Tourism Chamber in promoting Philippine tourism in Israel.

Since the Chamber's establishment during the Philippines' inaugural participation in the 2013 International Mediterranean Tourism Market (IMTM) – Israel's flagship and biggest annual tourism fair – the Embassy and the Chamber have partnered in several promotional activities to boost the influx of Israeli tourists who are becoming more interested to visit the Philippines. In 2013 alone, the number of Israelis traveling to the country reached a total of 7,675 - marking a 30% increase of the full 2012 figure (5,895).

The new Head of the Embassy, Chargé d'Affaires Neal Imperial, and the current Chairman of the Chamber, Mr. Yariv Fischer, have engaged in a few meetings recently to strengthen their partnership and discuss new marketing schemes, such as the aforementioned write-ups, that would promote the Philippines and attract a bigger number of Israelis, most of whom are travel enthusiasts.

Apart from joint initiatives with the Chamber, the Embassy has also been working with other Israeli-owned and Philippine-based travel agencies targeting expansion in the Philippines by increasing the number of their clientele visiting the country. On 9 November 2014, Second Secretary and Consul Pamela F. Durian-Bailon attended a meeting of tourists and businessmen who were interested to learn more about the country. The activity, the first of several being planned, was organized by Janddy Tours to provide a platform to promote Philippine tourism, its top destinations and other attractions it can offer to visitors.

With the double-digit growth of Philippine-Israel tourism exchanges during recent years, the Embassy is keen to establish and strengthen ties with tourism companies in Israel and explore possible opportunities that would help sustain tourism growth. --END--