Sunday, September 4, 2011

22nd Philippine Travel Mart Expo

What: 22nd Philippine Travel Mart Expo Where: SMX Convention
When: September 2-4, 2011

Today is the last day of the 22nd Philippine Travel Mart Expo held at SMX Convention Center.

As a traveler, either you are buying or just choosing your next local destination – it is good to grab the opportunity on visiting this type of event for:

Familiarity on the Airlines – There were 4 major participants on this event:

  • Zest Air [] has the least visitors

  • Philippine Airlines [] - with their Palakbayan Program, they still have few buyers

  • AirPhil Express [] - has the cheapest price, I guess because I was not able to see the insurance fee on their fares

  • Cebu Pacific [] – claims to be the largest local airline that offers cheapest fares in most number of domestic destinations. Although, this is the airline of my choice, you travel addict should analyze what is the difference between buying in an Expo over online – actually there is none. Previously, they offer much cheaper fares during Expo, but now what you on sale over the net are the same price they use during the Expo period.

First hand experience of offers and promotional skills of the Hotels – I was eyeing for Pads in Palawan, they are offering 2,011php for 3D2N stay until end of this year. If I’m booking for January, they would price it at 2000php/night. But on their website it is only 1500php/night. You have to be resourceful, and know your factors as there are cases when it is better not to buy on the actual Expo site.

Package Tours – you’ll be able to learn the price range of different destinations. Cheapest all-in package to Batanes is on 22,000php for 3D2N stay.

Magazines – I was able to see Susan Calo Medina on the VIP Lounge, she is scheduled to sign her Travel Time magazine at 200php/pc. There were also Travel Magazines worth 50php on old copies. And, I was able to buy these 2 for 75php – 7101 Island Travel Magazine (

Cultural Show – There was a competition of Universities and Colleges showing cultural/folk dances of each Region.

My top 3 best exhibitors are:
1. Davao – very beautiful and resourceful. They used pineapple, banana and different types of flowers to spell out D-A-V-A-O.

2. Southern Tagalog Region – their booth is like an aquarium inside with floating fish (Nemo) while outside they have approachable men in Moriones/gladiator costumes.

3. Ilocos – very small area but caters their products

I must commend PHILTOA [] (Philippine Tour Operators Association) and DOT (Department of Tourism) for having this program of showcasing what our country can offer to the world. I hope that on the next World Expo, Philippines will be advertised on a higher level than what was shown in 2010 in Shanghai.