Baguio ready to accept 1,000 visitors daily

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Tourists from different parts of Luzon wanting to spend their Yuletide vacation in the city can still register in the existing registration platform for visitors after city officials decided to increase the daily tourist arrivals from 500 to 1,000.

Supervising Tourism Operations Officer Engr. Aloysius C. Mapalo stated that the decision to increase the daily tourist arrivals in the city is part of the strategic program of the city to gradually, safely and responsibly open the local tourism industry as part of easing up on the economy for people to be able to hurdle the heavy impact of the prevailing community quarantine to their living condition.

He said that based on the data from the city’s registration platform,, there are nearly 3,200 approved travel requests to the city from December 1-31, 2020 where the same is expected to further increase in the coming days as there are some 200 to 300 travel requests that are being approved daily.

Earlier, the local government opened the tourism industry for prospective visitors from the Ilocos Region through the so-called Baguio-Region I tourism bubble dubbed as the Ridge and Reef tourism corridor.

However, the said endeavor turned out to be unsuccessful as there were only 15 approved visits to the city by tourists from Region I on October 1-22, 2020 that paved the way for the eventual opening of the city to tourists from Luzon.

Mapalo claimed that when the city eased up on visitors from Luzon, there were some 6,207 approved visits from October 22 to November 29, 2020 aside from the more than 7,000 approved travel requests for business and other essential travels to the city under another platform,, which indicates that the local tourism industry is slowly on the way to recover.

According to him, 80 percent of the approved travel requests to the city are from tourists residing in the National Capital Region (NCR) while the remaining 20 percent are equitably distributed in other regions in Luzon.

The city tourism officer disclosed that the number of travel requests to the city is expected to increase in the coming days because of the increasing number of daily applications from visitors wanting to spend a longer Yuletide break in the city.

While the approved travel requests to the city is still a far cry from the daily tourist arrivals in the city prior to the prevailing health crisis, Mapalo underscored that efforts are being done to help control the spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) following projections from health authorities on the possible surge in cases during the Yuletide season due to unavoidable gatherings among families to celebrate the Christmas and New Year through regulated means.

The city embraced the online registration platform for prospective visitors to serve as a database that will provide the local government and concerned government agencies with the details of tourist arrivals in the city to guide decision makers and policy makers on how to undertake tourism-related programs, projects and activities.

By Dexter A. See