MANILA, Philippines – It may be worse than we thought. In the latest development seen as part of the continuing fallout from the maritime spat between Manila and Beijing over Scarborough Shoal, cancellations by Chinese tourists on trips to the Philippines have already reached until January 2013, according to a regional tourism official.
In a text message to InterAksyon.com, Atty. Helen Catalbas, officer-in-charge for Region 6 (Western Visayas) of the Department of Tourism said: “as of 4 p.m. (on May 14), 163 AAA and AA rooms have reported cancellations of Chinese bookings and one AAA resort have 230 cancelled room nights from July 2012-January 2013.”
She declined to estimate how large a dent these cancellations would have on the overall tourist arrivals in the island, but said her office was still monitoring the situation in Boracay, one of the country’s biggest tourism draws because of its vaunted lovely beaches. (Click InterAksyon.com for the rest. Originally published on May 16, 2012.)