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Filipino travelers among the most frugal in the world, according to a new report

Filipino travelers among the most frugal in the world, according to a new report

MANILA, Philippines — Filipino travelers are among the most frugal in the world, so frugal that they prefer to organize their trips by themselves than depend on travel agencies, a new report by e-commerce firm Picodi released Monday found.

According to a April-May 2019 Picodi survey of over 20,000 respondents, Filipino travelers shell out an average of P13,171 ($252) per person on a holiday, placing the Philippines at the 39th spot out of 41 countries covered by the report in terms of travel spending.

According to the National Wages and Productivity Commission, the nominal minimum wage in the National Capital Region is P537 but notes it is only P455.86 in real terms. The average annual income of a Filipino family was P267,000 in 2015, the latest available figure from the Philippine Statistics Authority.

Only 3% of Filipino respondents in the Picodi survey said they don’t try to save on trips while the rest said they buy tickets in advance and book their stay ahead of time to make their travels more affordable.

According to Picodi, most Filipino respondents prefer to organize their trips by themselves while only 10% rely on travel agencies.

“The main reasons for self-organized trips pointed out by Filipinos were the cheaper price (50%) and the ability to match everything according to preferences (48%). Those who travel with agencies mention that it saves time (52%) and is more comfortable (32%),” Picodi said.

The thriftiest travellers, according to Picodi, come from Indonesia and Pakistan, where holidaymakers spend $207 and $191, respectively. Australians spend the most money on holidays at $1,505 per person. 

The average exchange rate for May 2019 was used by Picodi.

Other Pinoy traveler habits, preferences

The same Picodi report also revealed a vast majority of Filipinos prefer domestic travels over going abroad. 

Among those who decide to travel outside the Philippines, the most popular countries to visit were Japan, Taiwan, the US, Singapore and South Korea. On the other hand, Manila, Batangas and Cebu are the top destinations of those who prefer the Philippine landscape.

Most Filipinos also choose to travel during the high season at 47%, although the shoulder season managed to gain many Filipino fans with 42% of respondents saying they prefer to go on trips during this period. Travel is generally cheaper during the off-season.

Majority of Filipinos surveyed added that they travel with their family or partner (57% and 24%, respectively) most of the time. Meanwhile, 12% go with friends and only 7% prefer to travel alone.

The results of the Picodi poll also showed that most Filipinos (77%) would rather explore new places while 23% chose to go back to places they already know.

The World Tourism Organization forecasts international tourist arrivals to reach 1.8 billion by 2030. — Ian Nicolas Cigaral