Why It’s Still More Fun in the Philippines

by Seneca Moraleda-Puguan

It’s More Fun in the Philippines!

For more than a decade, this had been the tourism marketing campaign of the Philippines, one of the world’s most-loved tourist destinations because of its beautiful beaches, rich culture, and hospitable people.

This campaign that ran from 2012 to 2023 had been one of the most successful efforts to invite tourists from all over the world to come and enjoy the fun that the Philippines offers.Snorkeling? More fun in the Philippines!Picnics? More fun in the Philippines!Parties? More fun in the Philippines!This slogan has captured millions of Filipinos’ hearts and enticed millions of foreigners to visit the Philippines. The campaign was responsible for a 17 percent rise in foreign tourist arrivals for the first quarter of the year it was launched.

It also became exploded on social media where millions of influencers and users have shared the #itsmorefuninthephilippines hashtag. It also landed third among the 100 smartest marketing campaigns of the Warc 100, a global annual ranking of marketing campaigns based on performance, effectiveness and strategy.

In June of 2023, the Department of Tourism (DOT) rebranded its marketing campaign from “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” to “Love the Philippines.”

Unfortunately, the video that was launched to promote the campaign drew criticism when some of the video clips were found to be stock videos of places that are not in the Philippines. And the slogan itself wasn’t received well by many locals.

Some gave proposals like adding a comma between “Love” and “the” making it to “Love, the Philippines.” Others suggested retaining the already successful “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” slogan.

When I watched the new tourism campaign video, “Love the Philippines”, I must say that it was excellently created but it didn’t have much impact on me compared to the previous campaign.

Yes, it showcased the beauty of the country and it encouraged tourists that there are so many things in the Philippines that are to be loved but It’s a little bland and there’s no “wow” and “oomph” factor.

It even made me and my husband quite confused. Is the “Love” in the slogan a command to love the country or is it “you will love the Philippines because…?”

My husband and I thought it would have been better if they made a nationwide call for locals (both amateurs and professionals) to shoot content about what they love about the Philippines and offer rewards to the superb and excellent creators.

This would have saved more money compared to the millions of pesos they have allotted for the campaign. And they would have created heartfelt and a genuine campaign, made by the locals.

As for me, I still think that the slogan “It’s More Fun in the Philippines” works best. Yes, I understand that they want to rebrand and maybe offer something fresh, but I think there’s a reason why it has worked all these years and there’s no reason to terminate it.

When I think of the Philippines, I can say that it really is more fun there!

Transportation is more convenient in South Korea. But the tricycles and jeepneys? Oh, my children think they are more fun!

There are many beautiful gardens, caves, and beaches where we live now. But swimming and snorkeling, spelunking and mountain climbing are more fun in the Philippines!

Parties? Definitely, Filipino style! Karaokes, overflowing food, fiestas are things that we surely enjoy and definitely miss.

And the people, we love the Koreans. They too are very friendly and accommodating. But the Filipinos? Nothing beats their smiles and warm hospitality, they will treat you as family and not just a visitor.

Nevertheless, no matter what campaign or slogan the DOT decides to pursue, I hope that every tourist that visits the country will truly feel that there is so much to love there and they will leave the country with the overwhelming feeling that it truly is more fun in the Philippines.

How about you? What do you think of the new tourism campaign? Do you like “Love the Philippines” more or “It’s More Fun in the Philippines”?

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