Philippines gets ‘Safe Travels’ stamp of approval from World Tourism Council

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Philippines 'Safe Travels' stamp
World-famous Boracay is one of the travel destinations that has reopened to tourism activities. Photo from DOT.

The Philippines has obtained the ‘Safe Travels’ stamp from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), granting approval of the country as a trusted global destination that follows strict health and hygiene protocols amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The country is the 100th destination to be awarded the specialized safety stamp by the travel body composed of leaders from the international tourism sector.

“We are delighted to see our innovative initiative is proving such a great success and is being used by destinations from all corners of the globe,” Gloria Guevara, WTTC President & CEO, said in a press release on September 18, 2020, celebrating the milestone.

The special stamp is designed to help tourists recognize WTTC destinations offering safe travels.

WTTC released fresh guidelines to ensure travelers’ welfare in a bid to boost confidence in tourism as the world gradually adjusts to the new normal. Their stamp of approval marks eligible establishments such as hotels, airlines, restaurants, attractions, and transportation fit to serve customers according to a world-class standard.

“The 100 destinations which now proudly use the stamp are working together to help rebuild consumer confidence worldwide. We welcome the Philippines, an incredible destination and home to some of the world’s most beautiful islands, as our 100th destination, as well as other popular destinations around the globe such as Turkey, Egypt, Indonesia, and Kenya,” Guevara remarked.

The Safe Travels stamp is now on 100 countries.

The Philippines’ Department of Tourism received notice of the Safe Travels stamp and announced it on September 21, 2020, as it celebrated the recognition and vowed to keep up its sustainability and safety programs aimed to revive the tourism industry.

“The Department has also intensified the accreditation of establishments, continuing thorough inspection and assessment, to ensure that only those accredited with the Department of Tourism, and issued with a Certificate of Authority to Operate, are allowed to open and receive guests,” Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo-Puyat said.

As a user of the stamp, the DOT will now assume the responsibilities of a SafeTravels ambassador campaigning for the full implementation of WTTC’s released health and safety protocols.

“The DOT is one with the global tourism industry in prioritizing health and safety of travelers. In support of this shared advocacy, we will constantly improve our protocols, to make sure that our stakeholders, communities, and workers in the Philippines that rely on tourism can resume their livelihood safely once travel restrictions are eased,” Puyat continued.

The DOT has released its own ‘new normal’ health protocols for Philippine establishments as the economy gradually reopens.

Baguio City will soon be ready to welcome domestic travelers and has released “Jeepito” – or the World’s smallest Philippine Jeepney in a bid to boost the city’s tourism. The country’s summer capital had earlier reopened Camp John Hay to local residents.

World-famous Boracay beach had earlier reopened to tourists with health safety protocols in place.

The Philippines’ tourism sector also welcomed recognition from international organizations who are praising the country’s best travel spots.

The Philippines was voted Best Diving Area by the Japanese subscribers of the bestselling Marine Diving Magazine. Trusty travel guide Lonely Planet named Tubbataha Reef National Park in Palawan and Moalboal in Cebu as among its recommended “most surprisingly spectacular” dive spots in the world.

SEND CHEERS in the comments below to the Philippines’ tourism sector for getting a ‘Safe Travels’ stamp of approval from the World Tourism Council.

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Margo Hannah De Guzman Quadra
Margo is a voracious reader - some might even say she reads too much for her own good. She majored in BS Psychology and hopes to become a forensic psychologist one day. She’s also an aspiring writer, mental health advocate, and a staunch believer of equality.