Travel campaign urges Filipinos to immerse in HK experience
UNTIL recently, Hong Kong has been the go-to destination for Filipino travelers looking for a quick getaway outside of the country. From its affordable shopping finds to delectable dining choices, the former British colony and now “Special Administrative Region” of China has always been a favorite tourist spot among different destinations in the Southeast Asian region.
However, as the governments of Hong Kong and the Philippines longed to resolve the issue on the hostage-taking crisis that happened in 2010, many Filipinos have had reservations in visiting the neighboring country, what with threats of tighter traveling requirements that reportedly demanded Filipinos to apply for a tourist visa upon entering the country.
But after Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada made a formal apology on behalf of the Philippine government in April, the Hong Kong government has been quick to accept his statement and has openly called on Filipino travelers to explore the best adventure, shopping and dining experience their country has to offer, through the launch of the “My Time For” campaign of the Hong Kong Tourism Board (HKTB) at the Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila on August 14.
“In the beginning of the year, we felt that Filipino visitors were not really sure if they will be subjected to the tightening of the visa requirements in Hong Kong. However, with the apology of Manila Mayor Estrada, the hostage-taking issue has ended, and the Hong Kong government has issued a statement that there will be no more sanctions,” said Simon Wong, regional director of the HKTB.
“For the record, we want to reiterate that there has been no sanction imposed on the Philippine government,” the director was quick to affirm.
Leaving the past incident behind, the HKTB launched their first and newest tourism campaign in the Philippines to entice Filipinos to discover the “DNA” of Hong Kong, that is “compact variety, non-stop intensity, fascinating contrasts, and distinctly trendy.”
Recognizing the new trends in traveling experience, the HKTB has commissioned three Hong Kong celebrities in the realm of food, fashion, and adventure. The My Time For campaign features three entertaining videos categorizing Hong Kong travel as a time for “indulgence, renewal, and urban escapes.”
In HKTB’s “My Time for Indulgence” video campaign, Michelin star chef Alvin Leung shows travelers how to “eat a whole cow” through a culinary experience in dining destinations found in Hong Kong’s Sheung Wan, Temple Street and Wan Chai.
“My Time for Renewal” features Hong Kong designer and style blogger J.J. Acuna who takes on a shopping journey to “renew” himself as a sophisticated, stylish gentleman. With street markets found in Mongkok, Kowloon, as well as huge malls found in the metro, shopping is still a favorite tourist activity in Hong Kong.
For host and model Jason Godfrey, “My Time for Urban Escapes” means going around Hong Kong’s outdoor destination, may it be on a beach or visiting theme parks such as Disneyland or Ocean Park.
Besides the launch of tourism campaign videos to entice more Filipino travelers to visit the country, the HKTB had also launched an interactive mobile application called “My Hong Kong Guide,” which can be downloaded on any Android or IOS operated smart phone.
“We understand how Filipino travelers have become tech-savvy. There are a lot of people who go online to plan their trips, and in this mobile app, friends can make comments and suggestions where to go and what to do in Hong Kong,” Wong told The Manila Times.
Proud of the many activities travelers can do in Hong Kong, Wong further stressed that with careful planning, Filipinos can fully maximize their stay in the country.