One app to rule them all: DOT’s new travel platform
The country’s tourism is slowly reopening and for those who are keen on traveling these days, the Department of Tourism’s new progressive web app Travel Philippines is a one-stop shop for safe and responsible travel in the time of COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
In an online media launch, the Department of Tourism and the Tourism Board of the Philippines, in partnership with HIMO Global Inc. and Talino Venture Labs, introduced Travel Philippines, an easy-to-use platform that would be helpful for both domestic and international tourists planning to travel around the country.
“As we continue to reopen the country’s tourism destinations, Travel Philippines serves as every tourist’s official guide to safe and fun travel,” said Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat during the launch. She also noted that going digital is “neither optional nor a luxury” as digital transformation is crucial to the survival to the tourism industry, which continues to be pummeled by the effects of the pandemic.
First, one has to go to app.philippines.travel from one’s desktop browser to view the platform. On mobile devices, just put app.philippines.travel in the browser (Safari for iOS and Google Chrome for Android) and after a couple of more steps (see images below), it automatically downloads the app to one’s smartphone.
According to HIMO Global Inc. president and Talino Venture Labs CEO Winston Damarillo, the platform was designed to run in all known devices and can be accessed even on offline mode in mobile devices.
Inside the Travel Philippines platform is a database of various destinations and attractions that are reopening after the COVID-19 community quarantines. At present there are six major tourist destinations available ionn the platform: Palawan, Boracay, Bohol, Baguio, Ilocos Norte and Metro Manila. As soon as other destinations open up, they will be included in the platform.
Aside from the basic travel information about the featured destinations, the platform also has official up-to-date health and safety protocols that are being implemented in various destinations that have reopened for tourism.
The information in the platform is being updated every day and is sourced directly from the local tourism offices. As more destinations reopen, the platform will be regularly updated to reflect the latest information.
Being organized while traveling is even more important during the pandemic as there are a lot of requirements needed from travelers even before they are allowed to get in the plane or drive to the destination. With that need, the platform allows travelers to build an itinerary that integrates with the extensive catalog of tourist attractions, DOT-accredited restaurants and accommodation establishments.
Travelers can also upload in their personal Travel Philippines account the digital copies of important documents like boarding passes, hotel reservations, medical certificates, etc. Once uploaded on the platform, you can access these documents even if your mobile device does not have an internet connection.
Damarillo assures users that their personal information and documents are protected with KeyCloak security.
The platform is constantly evolving to keep up with the ever-changing demands of local travel. Soon, it will carry travel deals, cashless payment options, and more.
The launch of the Travel Philippines platform is just the beginning of the DOT’s goal to make it a must-have, one-stop shop for travelers.
“Travel Philippines marks DOT’s continued push to breathe new life into the severely affected tourism industry by promoting safe and responsible travel. We look forward to seeing both domestic and international tourists use Travel Philippines in their future trips,” Puyat said.
Banner image of El Nido by Christian Paul Del Rosario from Pexels