The islands of the Philippines just keep on getting more and more popular with 250,000 Australians estimated to have visited last year alone.

With this in mind, 13 personal travel managers were invited to be part of a group of 30 travel professionals on an eight-day famil of the island provinces of Cebu and Bohol, hosted by the Philippine Department of Tourism and Philippine Airlines.

After arriving in Cebu, the group spent their first morning participating in a “travel exchange”: a series of B2B sessions with suppliers that were either targeting or already active in the Australian market.


Wendy Krukowitch, who is representative for Watsonia, VIC, says she appreciated the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the country’s different regions, and the various types of accommodation and touring available to her clients.

“Apart from seeing some of the areas first hand, the B2B sessions introduced us land operators around the Philippines. As this was my first trip to the Philippines, it was great to be able to put it all into perspective,” she said.

From here, the group spent an afternoon carrying out site inspections, including popular resorts on the neighbouring island of Mactan, and wrapped up the day with a Filipino-style buffet dinner.

The advisors then divided into two groups: the first of which headed to the south-eastern end of Cebu.

According to Michelle Lehn, who was one of the PTMs in this group, one of the highlights of their itinerary was the chance to get in the water and interact with whale sharks in Oslob.

Meanwhile, the other group spent two days exploring several of the islands further east from Cebu, including Bohol, where they enjoyed a lunch cruise on the tranquil Loboc River, and Panglao, which is famed for its beautiful beaches and incredibly diverse marine life.

As well as the undeniable scenic highlights of their time in the Philippines, many of the famil participants also identified a further reason that they intend to return in the future, including Julie Painter who is representative for Mount Colah, NSW.
“The Filipino people are the most incredible, giving and heart-warming culture I’ve experienced in Asia – you can’t help but return the smiles, everywhere you go,” she explains.

Both groups reconnected back in Manila, where they were hosted for a second series of B2B supplier workshops.


Have you visited The Philippines yet?