The lack of foreign visitors in the Philippines due to the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is affecting the earnings of hotels for February, the Month of Love.
Chrisitne Ibarreta, president of the Hotel Sales and Marketing Association, admitted on Friday, Feb. 14, that their profit dropped amidst the travel restrictions imposed by the Philippines and other countries to prevent the spread of the virus.
“Medyo malungkot kasi wala tayong foreign visitors pero meron tayo naman mga local. Ang maganda ay meron tayong domestic movements,” Ibaretta said during DZRH’s Coffee Break.
The Philippine government has banned the entry of people from China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau as part of measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Ibaretta revealed that their number of Chinese guests dropped by 50 percent, especially in Boracay.
She also called for the lifting of the travel restrictions in Taiwan even though it is considered by the World Health Organization (WHO) as part of China, where COVID-19 originated.
“Wala naman silang mataas na nagkaroon na pasyente at saka maganda yung business nila. Top five sa incoming businesses ang Taiwan,” Ibaretta explained.
She stressed that multiple conferences got cancelled because of the Philippines barring the entry of people from Taiwan.