BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN
The provincial government of Negros Occidental is targeting tourist arrivals of 500,000 this year, with the easing of travel restrictions, according to Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson.
The target, according to Lacson, is a 60 percent increase from the 311,527 tourist arrivals reported in 2021.
S-Pass is no longer required for travelers entering Negros Occidental, only vaccination cards.
“We make its easy now for travelers to come into Negros, so we hope it can contribute to arrivals,” Lacson said.
Provincial Tourism Office records showed that for the months of January and February this year, a total of 38,588 overnight tourists, including 52 foreigners, and 65,910 day visitors arrived in Negros Occidental.
It noted a 75 percent reduction of tourist arrivals in the province in 2020, compared to the pre-pandemic period in 2019.
Lacson said that highly-urbanized Bacolod City was invited in the meeting of tourism stakeholders, as he underscored the need of coordination between the provincial and city government in the tourism campaign.
He noted that Bacolod City got the bulk of tourist arrivals, as they have better facilities.
Negros Occidental has 196 tourism sites, now open to accept tourists. The Mambukal Mountain Resort in Brgy. Minoyan, Murcia, Negros Occidental, is set to re-open after the Holy Week.*