December 27, 2023
MANILA, Philippines — Over 161,000 passengers arrived in the country during the Christmas weekend, signaling a robust rebound in international travel, according to the Bureau of Immigration (BI) on Tuesday.
The BI reported that a total of 161,664 passengers arrived in the Philippines from Dec. 23 to 25, with almost 81 percent entering through Ninoy Aquino International Airport.
Meanwhile, the agency said that 130,497 passengers departed during the same period.
Immigration Commissioner Norman Tansingco said that the figures are a cause for celebration in the tourism and international travel sectors.
“International travel is not just on a rebound,” the commissioner said in a statement. “Figures show that the number of travelers is almost surpassing pre-pandemic numbers.”
The bureau noted that before the pandemic, the average daily arrival in the country for December 2019 was around 55,000, while the average daily departure was about 47,000.
The BI had previously announced that leading up to Christmas, the nationwide daily arrival of passengers this year had already reached 60,000.
In a message exchange with INQUIRER.net, BI spokesperson Dana Sandoval said that in December 2019, the immigration bureau logged over 1.71 million arrivals and over 1.45 million departures.
As of Monday, Dec. 25, Sandoval shared that the country has already recorded more than 1.32 million arriving passengers and almost 700,000 departing passengers.
Tansingco reiterated in a press release that added measures have been implemented to ensure a smooth process for passengers arriving and departing during this holiday season.