Baguio City, QC, Tagaytay among most-searched vacation destinations in Philippines

October 21, 2022 - 5:09 PM
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This Sept. 2, 2020 photo shows residents visiting Burnham Park during its reopening. CEPMO Assistant Department Head Rhenan Diwas via (Baguio Public Information Office / Facebook)

Summer destinations Baguio City and Tagaytay emerged as among the most searched places for accommodations in the second quarter of 2022, according to recent data from a booking company.

Airbnb, a popular vacation rental company, discussed its report about the travel and booking trends within its platform at a media conference on October 18.

Based on data from this report, some of the places that made it to the list are well-known tourist spots.

The following are the most searched destinations for accommodations by Filipinos in the second quarter of this year:

  1. Baguio City
  2. Quezon City in Metro Manila
  3. Tagaytay City in Cavite
  4. Dumaguete City in Negros Island
  5. Calaca City in Batangas
  6. Guagua municipality in Pampanga
  7. Unisan municipality in Quezon
  8. Jala-jala municipality in Rizal

Longer travel was also found as a key trend, according to Airbnb’s report.

In terms of trip length, long-term stays of 28 days or more have increased by 25% since 2021 in the same quarter and skyrocketed by 90% since the same period in 2019.

Traveling and remote work were the main reasons that more than a third of Filipino travelers book through Airbnb.

Airbnb also found out that search results have increased for destinations outside of major cities in different countries.

The following are the most-searched places in each country that are not usually considered major tourist spots:

  • Haldwani in India
  • Nasushiobara in Japan
  • Mount Field in Australia
  • Marang in Malaysia
  • Siquijor in the Philippines
  • Yeongdeok-gun in South Korea

These places were ranked based on Airbnb’s internal data.

In line with these data, Steve Dailisan, AirAsia Philippines’ head of communications and public Affairs, said during the conference that the airline is now widening its domestic reach and launching new routes in the Philippines.

“By providing a greater variety of travel options and digitizing traveler touchpoints through the AirAsia Super App, we aim to decentralize tourism traffic in the usual hotspots and help promote lesser-known destinations that are equally as exciting through a seamless travel experience,” Dailisan said.

On sustainable travel

Sustainable tourism is still important amid the boost in domestic travel in the Philippines, according to Domingo Ramon Enerio, former DOT assistant secretary and chief operating officer of the Tourism Promotions Board.

“It’s very important that’s sustainable tourism—to protect the environment, to sustain the culture, to preserve the culture—but also to make a lot of money in the process for that particular community. So that’s where we are,” he said.

Enerio also pointed out that Tourism Secretary Christina Frasco has an important role in implementing programs that are both economical and sustainable for local communities.

“She (Frasco) is in the position to implement more programs that will allow local governments to participate. And to allow local communities to host and to take advantage of economic benefits without forgetting the necessity of protecting the environment and preserving the culture,” he said.

Andrew Staples, Economist Impact’s regional policy and insights head, also added an insight that Filipino travelers are actually more aware of their impact on local communities than before.

“Research shows that since the pandemic, Filipino travelers have been thinking more about their impact on local communities, economies and the environment. This awakening of sorts has accelerated the push towards a more responsible form of travel, and the need for tourism stakeholders to jointly drive a future trajectory focused on resilience and sustainable growth,” Staples said.

On health and safety 

Amanpreet Bajaj, Airbnb’s general manager for Southeast Asia, India, Hong Kong and Taiwan, said that the company has partnered with several health firms, including the Department of Health, to ensure the safety of guests and hosts.

Bajaj cited its Super Hosts or those who offer a higher standard of hospitality to their guests.

“We have a diverse hosting community in the Philippines. And we have a very high percentage of what we call Super hosts which means they provide very high standards of hospitality,” Bajaj said.