Singapore is the top travel destination for Filipino tourists, followed by South Korea, Thailand and Japan, based on activity bookings from travel platform Klook.
Michelle Ho, General Manager at Klook Southeast Asia confirmed with PhilSTAR L!fe the hottest destinations for revenge travelers following the recently concluded Klook Travel Fest 2022.
The event held last October 22-23 at Glorietta Activity Center saw thousands of guests and hundreds of bookings, with many Filipino tourists on serious revenge travel mode planning their holiday and 2023 getaways.
“Singapore has always been the top outbound destination in 2022 due to ease of restrictions but also because of the number of tours, attractions and hotels we have available for Singapore on Klook. Meanwhile, Thailand's growth remains stable, especially for food lovers and enthusiasts,” Ho told PhilSTAR L!fe.
While Singapore and Thailand have long been open for tourists and allow visa-free travel for Filipinos, Klook noted that with Japan's recent reopening, they are also seeing a surge in demand for bookings in Japanese cities like Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Hokkaido Prefecture and more.
Japan, which fully reopened its doors to individual travelers on October 11, was a top destination for Filipino travelers through Klook bookings prior to the pandemic.
“Japan is picking up in the booking count, especially after announcing the ease of restrictions for travelers. We foresee its continuous growth especially for the Cherry Blossom season, in Q1 next year,” added Ho.
Despite strict visa-requirements still needed for Filipino tourists, Ho said that South Korea is quickly becoming part of the top destinations due to the K-fever (K-Pop and K-Drama trends) in the Philippines.
The Klook Travel Fest gave visitors a taste of the hottest destinations and attractions, with booths designed by Moss Manila including a Japan booth adorned with Sakura trees, Korea with autumn foliage, Singapore with its Cloud Forest and a Thailand booth depicting their floating markets. Other travel and tourism booths were also ready to help all guests with their itinerary plans and travel inquiries.
For Japan, one of the most frequently booked packages/tickets on the platform is the JR Pass which allows users to enjoy hassle-free unlimited travel across JR lines, including local buses, Miyajima Ferry, and more. Tickets to theme parks like Universal Studios Japan, Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo Disneysea are also very popular.
The USJ pass now includes access to the new Super Nintendo World, based on Nintendo video game franchises, primarily the Mario franchise and its various sub-series, which opened its doors to the public last March 2021.
For South Korea, the most booked packages include airport transfers, flights and packages to Nami Island, a popular filming location for K-drama series such as Winter Sonata, Hi Bye, Mama! and When My Love Blooms, among others.
Other popular packages available on the platform include the Lotte World Day Pass and N Seoul Tower Ticket as well as other tourist attractions around Seoul, Busan, Gangwan-do Jeju and more.
With the easing of travel restrictions, Klook is reportedly set to match pre-pandemic numbers in markets that are open already like Singapore.
“Currently, we are already seeing 257% quarter-on-quarter growth for cross-border travel which pushes us further to expand the variety of experiences in our platform in order to cater to the market’s demand,” said Ho.
Those who missed out on the Klook Travel Fest event can still score promo deals and discounts on activities and hotel stays during Klook’s 11.11 Sale which will be launching in the first week of November.