Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco led the launch of the Department of Tourism’s (DOT) Philippines Hop-On-Hop-Off (HOHO) within the nation’s capital introducing Manila’s “Cultural Hub” excursions on July 6. Joining Secretary Frasco have been officers of the City Government of Manila led by Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna, and tourism stakeholders.
Dubbed as “the country’s first ever hop-on, hop-off bus tour program,” the Manila Cultural Hub hyperlinks it with Makati’s “Financial Hub,” which Secretary Frasco and tourism trade stakeholders launched final 28 May.
Speaking earlier than visitors, Secretary Frasco mentioned the flagship program elevates the tourism choices of the nation by offering comfort and digitalization saying, “Our President envisions a tourism industry that is able to compete shoulder to shoulder with our neighbors in Asia as well as the rest of the world. And that is why we introduced tourism to the digital age through this Hop On, Hop Off Bus Tours that allows tourists to book through an app, curate their experiences, and travel at their own convenience,” she mentioned.
Secretary Frasco expounded on international altering journey tendencies and the rising need of vacationers for extra immersive experiences. “Travel trends continue to change, and it is incumbent upon us in the national government and local government to adapt. It is time for us to evolve and to truly understand the necessity of ensuring that we are not left behind in the post-pandemic world,” she mentioned of the undertaking’s rosy prospects for guests to discover and expertise the completely different tourism hubs within the city jungle.
“With the launch of the Philippine Hop On, Hop Off Bus Tours here in the City of Manila, we aim to give opportunities to reintroduce Manila to our fellow Filipinos and to introduce foreign tourists to this beautiful gem of a city, to expose them to your heritage, your culture, the arts and most importantly, the story of the City of Manila,” the Tourism Chief added on how the Bus Tours, with its hassle-free, seamless, contactless and handy possibility, will play a pivotal function in bettering the tourism expertise in Manila.
“In the life of every nation as in the life of every city, feeding one’s culture is tantamount to feeding one’s soul. And that is why through the PH HOHO Bus Tours, we aim to partner with the City of Manila in your vision to make sure that this continues to be the Cultural Hub of Metro Manila,” the Tourism Chief shared about Manila’s wellspring of tradition and heritage.
Meanwhile, Manila Mayor Honey Lacuna cited the significance of creating the City’s cultural side of tourism.
“Facing the challenges of urban mobility, this will truly maximize any visit in exploring our attractions and experience a Manila that you’ll keep coming back to. The Department of Tourism and the City of Manila curated the attractions to be visited and made sure that this initial run will truly reflect the character of our city. As the HoHo progresses, we will make sure to incorporate other parts of our eight tourism hubs which is the core of our tourism development plan,” the native chief government added.
According to DOT’s National Capital Region (DOT-NCR) Director Sharlene Z. Batin, the Cultural Hub could have 9 stops which is able to spherical up Robinsons Manila – Raja Sulayman – Rizal Park Luneta – National Museum – Malacañang Heritage Tours-City Hall – Escolta – Binondo – Intramuros.
With the launch of the Cultural Hub, vacationers can now conveniently and leisurely stroll Manila’s historic and vibrant culturescape one bus cease at a time. They can select from curated and do-it-yourself itineraries with the choice for personal and guided excursions. Introductory worth for the HOHO Manila Cultural Hub tour begins at Php1,000 per particular person.
The Philippines HOHO incorporates a devoted web site with all important data, a reloadable EMV-capable card, and to finish the vacationer expertise, a cell app for reserving excursions, making cashless funds, GPS networked-bus arrival monitoring and video guides, in addition to data on inns, meals, and tourism retailers.
Earlier, Secretary Frasco, Mayor Lacuna and Tourism Promotions Board Chief Operating Officer Margarita Nograles stood as witness to the signing of a certificates of dedication between the City of Manila and leaders of tourism stakeholder associations comprising the Philippine Tour Operators Association (PHILTOA) President Fe Abling-Yu, Philippine Travel Agencies Association President Patria Chiong, Hotel Sales and Marketing Association International President Loleth So, National Association of Independent Travel Agencies President Racquel Sabucido, and Marinel Barquin Lee CEO of Positive Exposure, the undertaking integrator and tech-provider for the Philippines HOHO bus undertaking.
In 2022, NCR recorded a complete of 5.3 million in a single day vacationers in NCR, with Manila rating fourth at 710,275 arrivals, whereas Makati City ranks one slot increased with 969,927 arrivals, tailing behind Pasay and Parañaque which took the primary and second spots, respectively. Meanwhile, Manila tops the same-day arrivals with 7.4M recorded in the identical interval final yr per the DOT’s file.