The Department of Tourism (DOT) on Tuesday night kicked off a program which seeks to honor frontliners, managers, individuals and local chief executives who have made a huge impact to the tourism industry over the past three years
Tourism Star Philippines awards, as it is called, was introduced to media during its official launch at the Diamond Hotel, Manila.
According to Tourism Undersecretary Maria Jasmin, the award “celebrates the excellence and dedication exemplified by the individuals with direct contract to tourists in driving the country’s tourism forward”.
“The search encourages everyone--whether foreign or local tourists--to share positive stories about how our tourism frontliners made their stay in more than 7, 000 islands more memorable,” Jasmin said during the event.
One can submit his or her nomination by visiting website www.tourismstar.ph until May 31. The first awarding ceremony will be on Sept. 2014, in time tour the Tourism Week celebration.
At the same time Jasmin urged owners and managers of the industry to continue with human resource development programs and to look at training their employees “as an investment rather than an expense”.
“Engaging training and retaining the best possible staff is often the only thing that differentiates a business from its competition,” the Tourism official said.
“Ultimately we hope that with or without the award, the culture of tourism will be instilled in the hearts and minds of the Filipinos...for a more fun tourisms sector,” she added.
Tourism Promotions Board chief operating officer Domingo Ramon Enerio meanwhile said that the program was “a good way to really showcase that the Philippines is indeed unique because of its people.”
“The It’s More Fun in the Philippines campaign has always been focused on...Filipino character, Filipino hospitality, warmth, friendliness and excellence of service,” Enerio said in an interview.
“This is a very good and timely program we launched today to give credit to those who really deserve the credit,” he added.
Meanwhile, Jasmin also mentioned in her speech that the DOT counts on the dedication and commitment of Filipinos to respond to the call to nation building.
She also said that the DOT continues to push towards achieving its goal of obtaining 10-million international tourist arrivals and generating 7.4 million jobs for Filipinos by 2016. (PNA/FPV/Azer N. Parrocha)