Tropicales named as new Tourism Attaché for PDOTSF

by ASIAN JOURNAL PRESS

MARIE Soleil P. Tropicales has been appointed as the new Tourism Director/Attaché for the San Francisco office of the Philippine Department of Tourism. Director Tropicales assumed her post last January 22, 2019.

Director Tropicales took over the SF post from Purificacion Suanding Molintas, who was tourism director for the last four years.

Read more at Asian Journal

BRING HOME A FRIEND PROGRAM LAUNCHING IN SAN FRANCISCO

The Philippine Department of Tourism, together with the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco, kicked off its Bring Home A Friend (BHAF) Program with two events in October 2017.

The soft launching event held during the Undiscovered SF Creative Night Market on October 20, 2017 attracted a millennial audience along with travel and media partners. Night Market attendees at the SOMA Pilipinas cultural district enjoyed night of Filipino-inspired music and dance performances, martial arts demonstrations, and cuisines with a San Francisco twist.

The program was officially launched on October 27, 2017 at the Philippine Center Building in San Francisco, CA. PDOT-San Francisco Tourism Attaché Purificacion Suanding-Molintas enticed and explained the mechanics on how to join the program to an audience of Filipino-American community/association leaders and influencers, airline representatives, tour operators, and members of the media. PDOT Undersecretary Katherine De Castro shared a brief message urging them to invite their friends and debuted the Bring Home a Friend Music Video by DOT’s newest Tourism Ambassador Piolo Pascual.

BHAF is a referral incentive program that aims to encourage both Filipinos abroad and expatriates living in the Philippines to invite their international friends to come and visit the country. This program will run from October 15, 2017 to April 15, 2018.

To join, the sponsor can register online at bringhomeafriend.online and invite his/her friends through the website. A sponsor must be 18 years of age and above, a Filipino dual citizen living in the Philippines or abroad as residents or overseas contract workers, or a foreigner (expatriate) living in the Philippines permanently or temporarily for a minimum of six months prior to the program period. An invitee can be anyone holding a foreign passport or dual citizenship living abroad for a minimum of six months prior to the program period and has traveled to the Philippines during the specified program period.

Three (3) sponsors and their invitees will be selected to win through an electronic raffle draw in April 2018. Sponsors have a chance to win a Le Grand condominium unit in Eastwood, Philippines, or a brand-new Toyota Vios, Duty Free gift certificate worth 200,000 pesos (approx. 3,800-4000 USD). Invitees can win two roundtrip tickets 6-days/5-nights accommodation in Palawan, two roundtrip tickets 5-days/4-nights accommodation in Cebu, or two roundtrip tickets 5-days/4-nights accommodation in Davao.

To register as a sponsor, go to bringhomeafriend.online .

For more details, visit philippinetourismusa.com .

Like, follow, and support the official BHAF social media accounts:

Facebook: bringhomeafriendPH

Twitter: bringhomePH

Instagram: bringhomeafriendPH

Email: bringhomeafriend@tourism.gov.ph

Hashtag: #BHAF2 #bringhomeafriend

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Travel partners enjoying a lively Filipino cultural performance at the BHAF Program Launch Event in San Francisco on October 27, 2017.

BHAF PROMOTION IN NaFFAA’S 2018 LEADERSHIP SUMMIT IN SAN FRANCISCO

The Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT) promoted the Bring Home a Friend (BHAF) Program during The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) 2018 Leadership Summit at the Philippine Center Building in San Francisco, CA on January 26, 2018.

PDOT-San Francisco Tourism Operations Officer Alessa Lopez explained the mechanics of the BHAF Program to more than 100 Filipino American leaders who flew in from all over the United States to celebrate NaFFAA’s 20th anniversary and to showcase their vision of unity and empowerment for the younger generations.

BHAF is a referral incentive project that aims to encourage both Filipinos abroad and expatriates living in the Philippines to invite their international friends to come and visit. This program will run from October 15, 2017, to April 15, 2018.

To join, the sponsor can register online at bringhomeafriend.online and invite his/her friends through the website. A sponsor must be 18 years of age and above, a Filipino dual citizen living in the Philippines or abroad as residents or overseas contract workers, or a foreigner (expatriate) living in the Philippines permanently or temporarily for a minimum of six months prior to the program period. An invitee can be anyone holding a foreign passport or dual citizenship living abroad for a minimum of six months prior to the program period and has traveled to the Philippines during the specified program period.

Three (3) sponsors and their invitees will be selected to win through an electronic raffle draw in April 2018. Sponsors have a chance to win a Le Grand condominium unit in Eastwood, Philippines, or a brand-new Toyota Vios, Duty-Free gift certificate worth 200,000 pesos (approx. 3,800-4,000 USD). Invitees can win two roundtrip tickets 6-days/5-nights’ accommodations in Palawan, two roundtrip tickets 5-days/4-nights’ accommodation in Cebu, or two roundtrip tickets 5-days/4-nights’ accommodation in Davao.

To register as a sponsor, go to bringhomeafriend.online  
For more details, visit philippinetourismusa.com

Like, follow, and support the official BHAF social media accounts:
Facebook: BringHomeAFriendPH
Twitter: bringhomeph
Instagram: bringhomeafriendph
Email: bringhomeafriend@tourism.gov.ph
Hashtag: #BHAF2 #bringhomeafriend

Consul General Henry Bensurto Jr. expressing welcome remarks to Filipino American Leaders during the NaFFAA 2018 Leadership Summit at the Philippine Center Building in San Francisco on January 26, 2018.
PDOTSF Tourism Operations Officer Alessa Lopez enticing the crowd about the BHAF Program during the NaFFAA 2018 Leadership Summit at the Philippine Center Building in San Francisco on January 26, 2018.

Philippine Adult Chemistry Nightlife Event at the California Academy of Sciences

The Philippine Department of Tourism (PDOT) of San Francisco participated at the California Academy of Sciences (CAS) Nightlife in San Francisco on February 22, 2018, where the Adult Chemistry theme featured a series of Philippine Lambanog drinks and Philippine cuisine attendees enjoyed all night long.

PDOT-San Francisco’s resource speaker was Infanta Lambanog, a US distributor for Philippine Lambanog. Event goers enjoyed a Philippine Weng Weng and Mestizo cocktails as well as sampling them straight. Philippine cuisine such as Lechon (roasted pig), Garlic Noodles, Fried Green Beans, and Lumpia was also served.

Infanta Lambanog presented twice about Philippine Lambanog; the tourism destinations where they are produced (Quezon and Batangas), history, and the step by step process on how it is made (Harvesting, Fermentation, Distillation). They also touched on the sustainability of coconut plantations as well as what other products are produced through coconuts.

Located by the stairs leading down to the Philippine Coral Reef Tank, the Philippine Tourism Table distributed promotional giveaways through a prize wheel and information about Philippine destinations.

CAS researchers spoke about restoration and conservation efforts for Philippine coral reefs in the African Hall. Specimens collected from their trips were also displayed in the Project Lab and by the Swamp areas for event goers to observe up close.

CAS is a natural history museum that houses one of the world’s deepest living coral reef tanks; the 212,000 gallon Philippine Coral Reef Tank. CAS sends their research teams on expeditions to the Philippines to learn more about the center of the center of marine biodiversity and give efforts for restoration.

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PDOT-San Francisco Team Alessa Lopez, Nadine Tanjuakio and Renz Katigbak with Infanta Lambanog CEO Randy Ramiro and Joanne Boston from Filipino Food Movement at the California Academy of Sciences Nightlife Event on February 22, 2018.
Infanta Lambanog CEO Randy Ramiro during his Adult Chemistry Presentation at the California Academy of Sciences Nightlife Event on February 22, 2018
PDOT-San Francisco team Alessa Lopez and Nadine Tanjuakio engaging event goers to spin the wheel for promotional giveaways and answering inquiries about Philippine destinations.
Adult Chemistry Menu featured Philippine Lambanog cocktails and Philippine cuisine at the California Academy of Sciences Nightlife Event on February 22, 2018

Bay Area Travel & Adventure Show 2018

(Santa Clara, California) The Philippine Department of Tourism San Francisco sponsored a booth and participated in the Bay Area Travel & Adventure Show at the Santa Clara Convention Center on February 17 -18, 2018. A total of 21,312 people attended this year’s travel show.   

Philippine Travel Suppliers and Experts such as Philippine Airlines, Rajah Tours, Mango Tours, NRT Tours Centre, and Pacific Air Leisure enjoined in promoting and selling the Philippines to the thousands of travelers and information seekers during the event.

The Philippine booth highlighted leisure and cultural tourism through the backdrop display of Panglao Island, Bohol, and Intramuros, Manila. To increase brand and destination awareness, brochures, flyers, and promotional giveaways were distributed to event attendees. The booth also promoted the ongoing Bring Home a Friend Campaign and the upcoming 12th Ambassadors Tour to the Philippines from July 9 to 15, 2018, featuring the famous destinations of Cebu and Bohol. The raffle-draw of a free Philippine Airline ticket also drew attention to the booth.

The Travel & Adventure Show is the longest-running series of travel shows conducted in the Top 8 Feeder Markets in the United States, namely: San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, San Diego, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Washington, DC. These travel shows have become USA’s most noted travel events for marketers wishing to reach consumers and travel agents.

PDOT-San Francisco with the Philippine Travel Experts, from left to right: Ms. Esther Briones (Rajah Tours), Ms. Alejandra Clemente (Rajah Tours), Ms. Lyn Abad (Pacific Air Leisure), Mr. Paolo Gatmaitan (Philippine Airlines), Ms. Nadine Tanjuakio (PDOT-SF ), Ms Nonette, Roldan (NRT Tours Centre), Ms. Lina Jose (NRT Tours Centre), and Mr. Renz Katigbak (PDOT-SF)
Inquiries from the mainstream market during on the first day of the show
Non-stop inquiries, promo materials distribution and sign-ups at the Philippine tourism booth during the second day of the show

UP CULTURAL SUMMER CAMP STUDENTS VISIT SAN FRANCISCO PCG

26/07/2017: UP CULTURAL SUMMER CAMP STUDENTS VISIT SAN FRANCISCO PCG

“Magandang hapon,” chorused 30 voices who have been undergoing the University of the Philippines Alumni Association’s Cultural Summer Camp, eager to show off the Filipino phrases they have learned from their teachers.

As part of the Consulate’s movement to Spark*Connect*Empower* the Filipino-American Community, it organized an event for the University of the Philippines Alumni Association’s Filipino Cultural Summer Camp students at the Philippine Center on Tuesday, 25 July 2017, to educate them about the Philippine Consulate’s and partner agencies’ functions as a government agency based abroad.

The campers, with ages ranging from as young as 6 to 14 years of age, and are third-generation Filipino-Americans and have been learning Philippine history, music, arts, dance, cuisine, literature, and basic Filipino.

Deputy Consul General Jaime Ramon T. Ascalon welcomed the campers to the Consulate, informing them that his son was in the first batch of of the Cultural Summer Camp.  He proceeded to entertain the children with a yoyo exhibition, saying that the yoyo was popularized in 1929 by Filipino immigrant to the United States Pedro Flores.

Consul Carlyn A. Monastrial gave a presentation on the functions of the Philippine Consulate General, explaining that it is guided by the three pillars of foreign policy, namely political security, economic security, and assistance to nationals.  She added that the Consulate aims to reach out to the Filipino-American Community by providing platforms where the latter may be immersed in Philippine culture and heritage.  She led them on a tour of the Center, passing through the 2nd floor which houses the information section of the Consulate and the attached agencies; the Philippine Folklife Museum on the 5th floor, and the consular section on the 6th floor.

Tourism Office’s Alessa Lopez made a presentation on the functions of the Tourism Office, leading them through an interactive presentation that allowed the kids to win prizes for answering trivia about the Philippines.

A lunch of Jollibee chicken and spaghetti were provided to the campers and teachers, to familiarize the third-generation Filipino-Americans with the Filipino palate.  Ms Ana Segovia, the head instructor of the Summer Camp, informed that Consulate that it was the grandparents of the children who enrolled them in the Camp in their desire to ensure that kids are familiar with their roots, culture and heritage.  This is the first time that the Camp has targeted Filipino-American youth in the South Bay, providing the much-needed connection to their Filipino heritage.

In appreciation for the Consulate’s hospitality, the kids sang “Pen Pen de Sarapen”, a Filipino folk song that they learned in their classes.  They also wrote notes of support for Filipino soldiers in the frontlines, after they were informed of the insurgency going on in Marawi City. The children were given Philippine flaglets and magnets as a souvenir from the Consulate.  END

Ways to Maximize your Travel Rewards Points and Miles

International travel is becoming more accessible as airlines and travel companies cater to different interests, personalities, and budgets. Relying on seasonal airline promotions or special travel packages don’t always enable us to get the best vacation experience or travel as often as we would prefer.

Here are a few ways you can take advantage of travel rewards point and miles to travel in style or simply book your next trip for (practically) free.

Invest in a Rewards Credit Card

Credit card companies offer competitive and wide-ranging travel reward credit cards.  Popular travel reward credit companies include American Express, Capital One, Chase, and Citi. Depending on the card, points acquired from valid affiliate purchases can be transferred to airlines or hotel chains. You can also earn points when you gas up your car, get your weekly groceries, or indulge in your favorite restaurants. Airline credit cards often offer perks like priority boarding and booking, free checked baggage, and no foreign transaction fees. There are several websites such as nerdwallet.com, thepointsguy.com, or creditkarma.com that provide reviews and tips on credit cards that fit your needs and lifestyle.

Compare offers meticulously.

Buying and booking in advance is always better than doing it so close to your departure. In fact, frequent flyers know that last minute airfare offered miles spike up. The first offer you see is not usually the best you could find. It pays to exert more effort on comparing prices and points because it could give you an idea on which one best suits your requirements.

Travel to lesser-known destinations and off-peak season

Using travel rewards points or airline miles in the high-traffic destinations can be a bit difficult especially if you have specified travel dates. Whether you’re using travel awards miles or travel points to purchase your flight, it is likely hard to book seats to Hawaii, Bangkok, Cancun, or the Carribean. Instead, explore the lesser known vacation spots. Be on the lookout for airlines that just opened or increase new flights. You will likely get your desired vacation on your preferred dates. You might even get a great deal on upgrades. For instance, many Asian airlines have opened increased flights between the US and Asia. You may opt to avail or ongoing promos or increased airline seats to fly to Manila, Coron, Puerto Princesa (Palawan), or Cebu for that much-deserved tropical island getaway.

Use your miles for other purposes

For long-haul trips to Asian destinations like the Philippines,  use your reward points or miles to upgrade your cabin from economy to business class for a more comfortable flight. You can also spend them on booking a hotel room, renting a car, or including a stopover to your flight.

And lastly, don’t be afraid to ask!  Airlines and travel companies don’t always post all their offers and travel perks online.  Take time to research in travel forums, call/email customer service, or have a chat with the airport staff and hotel desk agents.

Ready to book your next trip? Check out these amazing Philippine destinations and find out how to get there. You can also check out our Travel Partners’ offers for great deals on Philippine hotel and activities packages!

DOT goes on US roadshow to promote Cebu

THE Department of Tourism (DOT) 7 is currently conducting a roadshow in four cities in the United States to lure more foreign tourists to come to Cebu via the Philippine Airlines’ (PAL) new direct link between Cebu and Los Angeles next month.

The agency, together with three Cebu-based travel agencies and travel operators/representatives from Manila will market Cebu and the Philippines to Filipino communities and US nationals in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco from Jan. 29 to Feb. 6.

PH consulate sets tourism ad drive for Super Bowl in SF

SAN FRANCISCO—In time for the Super Bowl in the Bay Area, the Tourism Office of the Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco is offering attractive travel packages to various destinations in the Philippines.

In a push to promote Manila, Boracay, Palawan, Cebu, Bohol and Albay, some cable cars, MUNI buses and trains will showcase the “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” ad campaign to coincide with San Francisco’s hosting of Super Bowl 50, America’s biggest sporting event.

Direct flights between Cebu, LA to bring in more business, tourism for VisMin

Bacolod City (CNN Philippines) — More business and tourism opportunities await the Negros Island Region (NIR) with the start of operation of direct flights from Cebu to Los Angeles in the U.S. and vice versa on March 15.

This, according to Harry Inoferio, sales head of Philippine Airlines (PAL), during the Visayas Roadshow in Bacolod City on Friday (February 12).

DOT, PAL launch of Cebu-LA flights to boost tourism

MORE foreign tourist arrivals, particularly in the Visayas, are expected starting this year as the Philippine Airlines (PAL) is set to begin its newest international service between Cebu and Los Angeles on March 15.

The airline held a Visayas Road Show to launch the non-stop flights between Cebu and Los Angeles at Sugarland Hotel in Bacolod City Friday.

Fil-Am community welcomes new tourism director to LA

MEMBERS of the Filipino-American community in Los Angeles officially welcomed Richmond Jimenez as the new tourism director at the Philippine Department of Tourism (DOT) office in this city.

Jimenez, who will serve in the position for the next three years, said that the department is seeking new ways to creatively attracted Filipinos and non-Filipinos living abroad to visit the Philippines.