Philippines Makes a Splash in Paris International Dive Show
15 January 2014 – With an eye-catching circular pavilion, the Philippine pavilion in the Salon de la Plongée or the Paris International Dive Show was a success.
Led by Department of Tourism (DOT) attachés Venus Tan and Arnold Gonzales, the Philippine pavilion featured the following dive operators, resorts, and airline companies: Abyssworld (http://www.abyssworld.com/info/), Amun Ini Beach Resort and Spa (http://amunini.com/), Atmosphere Resorts and Spa (http://atmosphereresorts.com/), Cathay Pacific Airways (http://www.cathaypacific.com/), Discovery Fleet Corp (http://www.discoveryfleet.com/), Dive Society/El Dorado Beach Resort/Kokay’s Maldito Dive Resort, Easy Diving (http://www.easydiving.ph/), Seadoors (http://www.seadoors.net/), and Seaquest Dive Center (http://www.seaquestdivecenter.net/).
Spread over one hectare of space, 400 exhibitors welcomed visitors and dive afficionados for three days, from January 10 to 12, at the Porte de Versailles in Paris.
Third Secretary and Vice Consul Rapunzel Acop and Commercial Attaché Vichael Roaring visited various exhibitors in the fair, noticing that the Philippines was only one of a few pavilions under a country banner.
“It has always been the DOT’s strategy to have all the exhibitors under the Philippine pavilion in order to promote the ‘Philippines’ as a brand and a diving destination,” explained Tourism Attaché Venus Tan.
Philippine dive spots were not only promoted in the Philippine pavilion, however, since various booths included dive trips to the Philippines, such as Worldwide Dive and Sail which offers luxury liveaboard accommodations through the S/Y Philippine Siren. “Our two liveaboard tours to Tubbataha are now sold out. All slots were taken within two weeks!” said its founder and managing director Frank Van Der Linde.
The annual Paris International Dive Show is one of two annual tourism fairs participated in by the DOT in France because of the Philippines’ strong positioning as an underwater destination.
France represents one of the fastest growing markets for tourists to the Philippines. From January to July 2013, there were 24,617 arrivals from France which represents a 19.95% increase over the same period last year. With Philippine Airline expected to resume direct flights from Paris to Manila this year, the DOT intends to have 50,000 tourists from France in the Philippines this year.
Officials from the Department of Transportation and Communication, the Civil Aviation Board, and the DOT, together with representatives from the Philippine Embassy in Paris and the Philippine Trade and Investment Center are in Paris for air talks with France on January 14 to 15. END