Home Destinations Asia The Philippine Travel Mart 2012 finally opens

The Philippine Travel Mart 2012 finally opens

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Earlier, I was lucky to witness the grand opening of the Philippine Travel Mart 2012 at SMX in Mall of Asia. From the welcome fun reception to the Ribbon Cutting, the upbeat sound and the dancing crowd only proves that filipinos are really fun loving people.

Philippine Travel Mart 2012 at SMX
Philippine Travel Mart 2012 at SMX

After the ribbon cutting, everyone proceeded to the activity center for the invocation, national anthem and opening remarks from this years Philippine Travel Mart Chairman and the current President of PHILTOA – Mr. Cesar Cruz.


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Opening Remarks from Mr Cesar Cruz Philtoa President
Opening Remarks from Mr Cesar Cruz Philtoa President

I was really happy to see some of my favorite DOT Regional Directors like Director Blesilda Diwa of Region 2 and Director Maria “Nini” Ravanilla from Bicol region and of course how can i forget friends I met from my previous trips. It was like a reunion… a huge reunion!

philippine Department of Tourism Regional Directors
Department of Tourism Regional Directors

With two long weekends providing much-needed rest in the busy month of August, many are already deciding on where to go in order to make the most out of these working-schedule breathing spaces. But what most people do not know is that August isn’t just one of the best months to go out and travel. With the opening of the 3-day Philippine Travel Mart (PTM), is also the best time to plan and book trips the whole year round.

Director Blesilda Diwa presenting products from Region 2
Director Blesilda Diwa presenting products from Region 2

Now on its 23rd year, the Philippine Travel Mart has undoubtedly become the biggest annual 3-day gathering of tour operators, hotels, resorts, and travel-related industries from all over the country. With over 250 exhibitors occupying all 4 halls of the SMX Convention Center in Pasay from August 10 until the 12th, there’s no shortage of options for travelers of all types.

Mutya ng Pilipinas 2012
Mutya ng Pilipinas 2012 Candidates at the opening of the 2012 Philippine Travel Mart

It doesn’t matter if you want a quiet retreat or a thrilling adventure; whether you’re planning your honeymoon or just going out with friends, you’re bound to find that perfect holiday—at the best rates only available this time of the year!

Its More Fun in the Philippines Booth
Its More Fun in the Philippines Booth

The show must go on!
Overcoming inclement weather, the much-awaited 23rd Philippine Travel Mart (PTM) opened to the delight of travelers planning to look for the best travel deals exclusively available at the PTM. Exhibitors from all over the country stood testament to the unbreakable spirit of the tourism industry, as they came out with beautiful displays of Philippine destinations following days of gloomy weather.

The event is not without social cause, however. The organizing committee has decided to donate a percentage of the gate proceeds to the victims of the recent calamity, and has also used the event to solicit donations in cash and in kind—attendees are encouraged to drop their share in donation boxes situated at the registration area.

Kumakaway Paoay Booth
Kumakaway Paoay Booth

Newer, more exciting packages
With all the regional directors of the Department of Tourism in attendance, the longest-running travel trade show in the country showcases the Philippines like never before in the Sale ng Bayan. Organized by the Philippine Tour Operators Association (PHILTOA) the Sale ng Bayan this year features Philippine Island Fun Caravan Getaways”—joint group tours that cover various locations from all over the Philippines. These 4-day to 8-day tours pool local, balikbayan, and foreign tourists together to avail of special packages that would have otherwise cost a lot of money if done individually.

DOT Region 5 Director Nini Ravanilla
DOT Region 5 Director Nini Ravanilla

Featured tours include the Batanes-Cagayan Northern-scape, Cordilleras Cultural Weekend Warrior Caravan, Central Visayas Backdoor tour, and the Tuna-T’Boli trail, among others. How’s that for an affordable treat?

A Lady wearing Tiboli Tribe Costume
A Lady wearing Tiboli Tribe Costume

Like most trade shows, the PTM will still feature classic destinations like Bohol, Boracay, Cebu and Palawan. Also not to be missed are the individual tour packages that have anywhere from 70% to 80% discounted prices, such as “Kulinarya” (Binondo food trip for as low as P648), “Health and Wellness” (Tagaytay Wellness trip for as low as P2900), “Festivals” (Panagbenga trip for as low as P5500), and many more.

Aside from the endless array of tour products in the country’s biggest gathering of tour operators, there’s also an Eco Chorale Competition, a Folk Dance Competition, and even a Tourism Quiz Bee—ensuring educational activities for everyone in attendance.

It’s more fun in the Philippines!

The Philippine Tour Operators Association (PHILTOA), Inc. is a non-stock and non-profit organization of tour operators and allied members actively involved in the advocacy of responsible tourism. The membership includes travel agencies, hotel, resorts, transportation companies, handicraft stores, and other tourism-oriented establishments and associations. For more information on the 23rd Philippine Travel Mart, visit <www.philtoa.org>.

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