Tourist arrivals in Bohol surged by 52 percent in the first half of the year, marking a steady recovery of the province’s once-booming tourism industry.
From January to June this year, 116,153 tourists arrived in Bohol, up from just 76,570 in the same period last year, data from the Bohol Tourism Office (BTO) showed.
According to BTO chief Josephine Cabarus, the increase was beyond their projected growth this year which was at only five percent.
She noted that almost all of the tourists at 112,879 were locals.
Meanwhile, 3,259 and 15 foreign tourist and Overseas Filipino workers, respectively, arrived during the six-month span.
“Ninety-seven point twenty and domestic kay domestic man gyud ang market sa Bohol,” said Cabarus.
Cabarus attributed the increase in arrivals to the relaxing of health safety protocols in the province, particularly the lifting of entry requirements.
“Kadtong pag 2021, diha pay S-Pass unya karon, wala na. Karon, daghan na pud vaccinated. So mas open na gyud ta,” said Cabarus.
The BTO is expecting the figures in the first six months to double in the final half of the year.
“Siguro mo abot na og 200,000 kapin by the end of the year labina na og makuha na ang complete details per town,” she added.
The COVID-19 pandemic has crippled the tourism industry of Bohol, one of the country’s top tourism draws.
In 2020, the year when the pandemic broke out, the number of tourist arrivals in the province plummeted to 177,341 from 1.5 million in the previous year. (AD)