15K hotel, tourism industry workers vaccinated

October 9, 2021, 12:03 pm

MANILA – Member hotels and resorts of the Hotel Sales and Marketing Association (HSMA) are confident to open doors to guests with the vaccination of its 15,000 personnel against coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

Of all the staff in the HSMA’s 125 member-properties, 98 percent have been vaccinated, the association’s vice president, Loleth So, said in a statement released on Friday.

“I was very persistent about getting all of our member-properties access to the vaccine. I made it a point to reach out to the human resources departments of the member-properties through a dedicated chat group so I would have the buy-in of the entire hotel,” So said.

Through collaborative partnerships with local government leaders, the Department of Tourism (DOT), and the Metro Manila Development Authority led by the Metro Manila Council, the HSMA member-properties are optimistic to reach a 100-percent vaccination rate in the coming months.

The association’s vaccination drive is in line with the DOT’s “Safe Trip, Pinas” campaign, an initiative established with the interest of every Filipino’s health and safety in mind.

Through this campaign, the DOT is working with hotels and resorts to implement strict protocols and precautionary measures set by the World Health Organization (WHO) to make travel safe for both guests and employees.

"Inoculating our tourism front-liners all over the country will be a key factor in reopening the industry, as well as restoring the public's confidence to travel, translating to higher socio-economic activities and boosting our recovery prospects," Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat said. "I call for public and private entities to practice the Bayanihan spirit in furthering the vaccination of our tourism workers."

So said the Filipino travelers' experience is now guaranteed an extra layer of security with more tourism front-liners getting vaccinated.

The announcement came on the heels of the second run of HSMA’s September Online Sale (SOS), which, like last year, offers discounted packages sold in the form of e-vouchers that can be used a year from the date of purchase and may be extended upon request.

The sale, done in partnership with the DOT, Tourism Promotions Board, Atlantis, iSentia, and Cebu Pacific Air, is ongoing until October 15 at www.hsma.org.ph/sos.

Eighty hotels and resorts across the country are part of this year’s SOS with deals and discounts reaching as much as 70 percent off.

“From a 15-day event, we’ve laid out a month-long travel mart. We are also including the ancillary services of the properties, such as restaurants, bars, banquet packages, spa, gym, and pool, and other facilities of the hotel, making this year’s campaign more thrilling and inviting,” says Benjie Martinez, HSMA president and area director of Sales and Marketing for Bayleaf Hotels. (PR)