SAFE TRAVELS: Traveling in the world of Covid-19

Hotel Sales and Marketing Association launch GPS TV season 2

The words “safe travels” “have a safe journey” has taken on an even cautious  meaning in this world that’s been distorted by COVID19 . 

Now, it’s more than just wishing someone a journey that is completed without a problem—but rather a precautious reminder to take extra care of their health as well.

Whether it’s going to be your first time or first time in a long time, we all have these hesitations and even if you’ve already traveled a lot, nothing could have prepared you for the changes and protocols of this new “normal.”

The world is a very different place than it was a year and a half ago, to the point it can sometimes be hard to remember “normal” as we slowly come to grips with this new reality still plagued by COVID-19. 

But that doesn’t mean we have to stay holed up in our homes until this pandemic is over. To put travelers at ease and help everyone familiarize themselves with new safety protocols, the Hotel Sales and Marketing Association (HSMA), is launching the second season of GPS TV.

A passion project of the HSMA, the organization has partnered with the Department of Tourism (DoT), Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), and Isentia,  to present HSMA GPSTV “Go Safe, Go Travel: Walk and Talk With Us.”

This collaborative effort aims to re-ignite the wanderlust of millions of Filipinos while always keeping in mind their health and safety, and a reminder to them of how beautiful the Philippines. Streaming via GPSTVofficialph on Facebook and YouTube starting this September 22, GPS TV will have 9 bite-sized episodes to entice everyone to go for safe travels and provide new ways of experiencing and promoting tourism during this pandemic. It will also have a 1-hour special episode on CNN this November.

The travel show hopes to remind viewers of how beautiful and wonderful the Philippines is despite the pandemic, and how – soon – we can experience it once again,” said HSMA President, Mr. Benjamin Martinez during the virtual press conference.

Martinez shared that before traveling to a new destination, “I like to watch travel shows that will inspire me and my family or my friends about our upcoming trip.  It’s a great way for all of us to plan ahead on what destinations to check out, what restaurants to eat in, the shops we want to visit, and activities we want to enjoy while never losing sight of the all-important fact of staying safe and healthy.”

“This is how we envision HSMA GPSTV “Go Safe, Go Travel: Walk and Talk With Us” to be. Think of it as an appetizer of future travels to come.”

Today, as the Philippines begins to cautiously emerge from lockdown, the tourism industry that accounts for about 12.8% of the national GDP is looking towards the new travel normal. And Filipino travelers, many of whom have been largely confined to their homes for over a year, are starting to dream again of beaches, mountains, and relaxing getaways. Yet, reopening travel presents its own challenges.

Hosted by Kevin Lapeña, GPSTV show has put together a list of excellent travel destinations that will have armchair explorers go on gastronomic and cultural adventures, staycations, bakasyon grandes in beach and adventure destinations, and even plan for milestone events when it is finally allowed.

From The Peninsula Manila’s iconic lobby and its famous halo-halo to Hotel Lucky Chinatown’s dim sum and pancit specialties, from The Bayleaf Intramuros’ Sky Deck and its incomparable views of the Manila Bay sunset to  Diamond Hotel and their glorious ensaymada.

From Sofitel Philippine Plaza’s table-groaning buffets in Spirals to Marriott Clark Hotel’s rooms that celebrate Pampanga’s unique heritage, from a unique Ilocos getaway in Vitalis Villas to a relaxing Acuaverde Beach Resort staycation in Batangas, from sunning in Bluewater Maribago Beach Resort while enjoying Cebu’s many delights to Crimson Resort & Spa Boracay and Discovery Shores Boracay’s famous white sand beaches.

From The Bellevue Bohol’s pristine waters to immersing one’s self in the rich culture of Mindanao while staying in Dusit D2 Davao, and so much more! Season Two of HSMA GPSTV promises to be a great travel show that will have its viewers eager to plan their dream getaways once we can all travel again!  

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“Someday soon, we hope to see all of us exploring our country once more and checking into city hotels, island resorts, mountain lodges, and seaside hideaways and experiencing our famous brand of Filipino warmth and hospitality,” added HSMA Vice President Loleth So. “And we hope watching GPSTV will have something to do with it; that it will encourage our viewers to pack up their bags and just go!” 

“We not only promote the enjoyment and pleasures of tourism, but, more importantly, highlight that travel can be safe and worry-free. It is crucial to discuss how we can encourage our guests towards the new normal of traveling. As stakeholders in the industry, we are in close coordination with the Department of Tourism who constantly keeps us abreast of all the government guidelines and protocols,” Ms. So added.

GPS TV likewise aims to reach remote workers, families, couples, regional travel groups, and local leisure travelers to plan ahead and learn how to navigate themselves to their preferred destination. With 140 hotel and resort members under HSMA, viewers will experience every property, giving them various choices for their next travel plan.

To put travelers at ease, the HSMA assured that, 98% of their member hotels- and resort- staff have been vaccinated. The ultimate goal of HSMA is to gain revenues for its hotels and resorts. Vaccinated staff will allay the health and safety concerns of our guests, encouraging them to enjoy extended vacations.

For best practices, they have also adapted the safety and hygiene protocols implemented by our corporate and regional offices across all brands. This is to ensure that safety guidelines are strictly adhered to on top of those of government protocols.

Other than unique content and excellent travel tips, HSMA GPSTV “Go Safe, Go Travel: Walk and Talk With Us” will also be sharing the latest travel protocols with its viewers as well as first dibs on special offers from HSMA-member hotels and resorts.

HSMA GPSTV “Go Safe, Go Travel: Walk and Talk With Us” Season Two is all set to stream on GPSTVofficialph on Facebook and on YouTube starting September 22 and on a CNN TV special in November this year.

Last year, HSMA in coordination with the Department of Tourism and the Tourism Promotions Board, we launched GPSTV aptly called “Go Philippines Soar High”, which ran for 3 months during the last quarter of 2020.

HSMA believes the public has to be constantly informed about the latest developments in the local tourism sector through a more digestible format. True to its aim, GPSTV provided “info-tainment” content on the updated protocols per locality to encourage domestic tourists to book and travel.

This year, GPSTV is back and this time our mantra is “Go Safe Go Tour: Walk and Talk with Us” which we want to instill to Philippine domestic travelers, our dear Kalakbayans.

Aside from the new season launch of the online series, HSMA is currently hosting the September Online Sale (SOS), an online sale of hotel vacation packages.

Visit https://hsma.org.ph/sos/ to get amazing deals on food and accommodation packages!

SOS 2021 Manila Hotels:

#SeptemberOnlineSale #SOS #MakeTravelHappenPH

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