Through Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte, Journalist
HOSPITALITY GROUPS expect tourism to rebound as 2019 coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccination rates continue to improve and travel restrictions are further relaxed across the country.
However, new, more transmissible COVID-19 variants may threaten the recovery of the tourism industry.
Chroma Hospitality, Inc., run by Filinvest, sees signs of a “revenge journey” after an increase in bookings for the rest of the year.
“We expect a rebound in travel due to the easing of restrictions and we are already feeling the increase in bookings as vaccination rates continue to rise, especially for our resorts and leisure hotels,” said James M. Montenegro, national director of Chroma Hospitality. separate email November 11.
Discovery World Corp. also experienced higher demand for its resorts, Discovery Shores Boracay and Club Paradise Palawan. Boracay has removed the requirement for the RT-PCR test for fully vaccinated tourists.
“We are seeing market demand increasing at both beachside properties,” said Claire D. Bernabe, director of sales and marketing for both properties, in an email Nov. 4.
“We hope that [maximize occupancy rates] while adhering to the guidelines of the Local Government Unit (LGU) and the Ministry of Tourism. Our suites in Boracay are spacious, as well as on our private island in Coron, and our commitment to the care program, Home Safe, ensures safety protocols, ”she added.
Hoteliers are hoping for a sustained recovery in travel and tourism once the country opens up to foreign tourists. The Philippines is allowing fully vaccinated tourists from low-risk countries to enter the country from December 1.
“We remain hopeful that the rebound in the tourism and hospitality industry will be successful, as we have seen in other countries,” Robinsons Hotels and Resorts said in an email Nov. 16. “We hope to work with our peers, hotel groups and government agencies to pragmatically prepare for the reopening of travel and be able to meet the accommodation needs and needs of our guests.”
Hotels and resorts have adjusted their operations amid the pandemic to protect guests.
Robinsons Hotels and Resorts said it was providingFit accommodation packages ”for balikbayans who need quarantined accommodation, corporate groups and leisure guests.
Chroma Hospitality has declared its new offers have been successful in the local market. These included organizing sports “bubble groups” at Quest Clark, whereffwork from the beach or work from home and open new food outlets.
“Everyone will depend a lot on the local domestic market to start with, so competition is crucial and the best, unique and timely offers will prevail, ”said Montenegro. “We have a range of local market focused promotions that invite everyone to explore and support local Filipino destinations. Fifirst of all.
Robinsons Hotels and Resorts said it has used digital technology solutions in its operations, introducing automatic check-in kiosks and digital payments. The group has also launched a food and drink e-commerce initiative through its online store and food delivery platforms.
Many hotels and resorts are also offering reduced rates to attract customers.
“For customers who don’t know when to travel for whatever reason, our Break Free Buy Now, Travel Later vouchers offer such flexibility, ”said Ms. Bernabe of Discovery World.
However, hotel companies must still adhere to government guidelines on operational capacity.
“Just as hotels managed by Chroma Hospitality want to maximize their occupancy, hotels are limited to doing so due to government capacity guidelines,” Montenegro said.
“It is also understandable for us because we do not want to take the risk of a resurgence of COVID-19,” he added.
The Philippines has seen a sharp drop in new COVID-19 cases in recent days. However, the World Health Organization has classified the B.1.1.529 or Omicron variant of the coronavirus as a “variant of concern,” saying it may be more contagious than previous ones.
The Philippines has already suspended inbound flights from South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Lesotho, Eswatini and Mozambique as well as Hong Kong.