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Manila, Philippines—The recent award accorded by Routes Asia 2024 to Clark International Airport (CRK) will further boost the country’s international tourist arrivals this year, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT).

CRK was named as the Routes Asia 2024 winner under the 5 Million Passengers Category.

“We are grateful for the recognition bestowed upon Clark International Airport at the Routes Asia Marketing Awards. Winning in the Under 5 Million Passengers category underscores the Marcos Administration’s commitment to excellence in route development marketing. This achievement reflects the dedication of the travel and air transport team and the resilience of CRK, showcasing its remarkable growth and positive impact on the aviation and tourism industries,” Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco said. She sits as the vice chairman of the Civil Aeronautics Board (CAB).

Among Frasco’s first directives is for the DOT to lobby for the full maximization of the country’s regional gateways, including Clark.

Secretary Frasco further noted that “unlike its ASEAN counterparts such as Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, and Cambodia, which benefit from cross-border travel, connectivity remains the paramount challenge for the Philippines. Thus, the Department has been proactive in working with the transportation department and other concerned stakeholders to increase the country’s connectivity. We are in full support of maximizing the use of other international gateways outside of Manila such as Clark and Cebu for the purpose of expanding direct flights, either commercial or chartered, not only toward the Philippines’ key destinations but also to the emerging destinations across the country.”

Specifically, the DOT introduced programs and initiatives such as visa reforms and airport enhancements that will encourage more travelers to visit the country, including the rollout of the Philippine Experience Program (PEP), as well as familiarization tours and regional expos to entice not only tourists but also potential investors.

“Receiving the Routes Asia Marketing Award is not just a triumph for Clark International Airport, it is also a testament to the collaborative efforts of the travel and tourism industry team and the unwavering support from the aviation community. This award fuels our commitment to continue pushing for the enhancement of connectivity and delivering top-notch airport services to our passengers through the healthy collaboration of our government air transportation agencies and private sector partners,” the tourism chief added.

According to CRK, the award accorded by Routes Asia 2024 “follows CRK’s exceptional performance in 2023, when it demonstrated significant growth by efficiently handling nearly two million passengers.”

“This outstanding achievement presents a remarkable 160 percent increase from the preceding 12 months, manifesting the airport’s resilience and robust recovery amid challenging circumstances,” CRK added in a statement.

Among the local routes catered to by the airport include the country’s prime destinations Palawan, Cebu, Boracay, among others.

This year, the DOT is targeting to register 7.7 million international tourist arrivals as baseline.


Published:March 1, 2024

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