The tourism industry will make a comeback this year as people take advantage of loosened restrictions and go on a “revenge travel” spree, according to ShopBack, a cashback reward program.
“We expect travel to be one of the big [sales drivers],” Prashant Kala, Philippine country head of ShopBack, told BusinessWorld in a May 5 Zoom call. Shopback aims to push P24 billion in sales to its brands in 2022, up from P15 billion last year.
The app will hold a three-day promotion May 16–19, offering up to 100% cashback from travel industry partners such as Agoda, Klook, and Trip.com. It also plans to double the number of companies offering e-vouchers (currently about 20) within the next few months.
Popular domestic destinations in the cashback reward program include Boracay, Palawan, Cebu, Baguio, and Batangas.
Per ShopBack data, domestic travelers tend to be families; international travelers, meanwhile, tend to be couples. Popular international destinations include the US and Singapore.
ShopBack saw spikes in flight and hotel bookings between October and November 2021; and in February, when the Omicron coronavirus variant did little to dampen Holy Week and Labor Day plans.
Public transport stakeholders in the Philippines have been making improvements on infrastructure as early as August 2021 in anticipation of the post-quarantine travel demand.
According to the latest Economic Impact Report of the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), travel and tourism in the Philippines will reach an annual growth rate of 6.7% in the next 10 years, exceeding its overall economy average growth rate of 5.6 %.
The country logged 202,700 foreign tourist arrivals as of April 7, a majority of which come from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, South Korea, and Australia. — Patricia B. Mirasol