Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. What is PICTourism? +

    Philippines Improving Competitiveness in Tourism or PICTourism is a pilot project of the Department of Tourism aimed at enhancing the standards of tourism products and services in four major tourist destinations – Bohol, Cebu, Davao and Palawan – through different interventions particularly in the areas of quality assurance and accreditation of hotels and resorts, skills development, and regulatory review of the sector.

  • 2. Who is funding the Project? +

    Funded by the Government of Canada and administered by the Asian Development Bank, this is a Technical Assistance project to the Department of Tourism.

  • 3. What is the scope of this Project? +

    PICTourism is being piloted in four major tourist destinations – Bohol, Cebu, Davao and Palawan. There are three components:

    • Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) which seeks to review regulations of the tourism sector to create a more enabling business environment to attract investment in the tourism industry.
    • Hotel and Resorts Quality Assurance and Accreditation which puts in place the National Accommodation Standards new Star-rating system that goes beyond the review of the quality of facilities of hotels and resorts to reach quality and efficient services.
    • Tourism Industry Skills Development Program which is aimed at improving competitiveness of the Philippine tourism industry through training of tourism professionals and partnerships with learning institutions.
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Tourism Industry Skills Grant Scheme

  • 1. What is the Industry Skills Grant Scheme? +

    The Tourism Industry Skills Grant Scheme (ISGS) provides funding for eligible staff training activities by tourism enterprises, community service organizations (CSO) and local government units (LGUs). The minimum funding support is $US10,000 and the maximum for an individual applicant is $US100,000. Successful applicants will be eligible to receive support of 80%

  • 2. How can I access ISGS training support? +

    Only eligible entities - tourism enterprises, civil society organizations, and local government units - can apply for a grant through a competitive application process. The decision to award ISGS funding is made by the National Tourism Skills Committee, an independent committee, based on the relative merits of all applications. Further details are available from Regional Facilitators in the four provinces (see contact details in the Contact Us page).

  • 3. How can I apply for an ISGS grant? +

    You can apply by completing the registration form online or directly at the office of the Regional Facilitator in your area. If you are eligible, we will announce when full application can be submitted. So watch out for the next application round.

    Please refer to the Applicant Handbook for guidance on the application process.

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Hotel and Resorts Quality Assurance and Accreditation System

  • 1. What are the basic criteria for the Star- rating? +

    The National Accommodation Standards has five levels of Star-rating ranging from 1-5 Stars. The accommodation standards identify the availability of services and facilities but, more importantly, they identify the quality and condition of these services and facilities. To obtain a higher Star-rating, progressively higher levels of service, condition and quality of the facility and improved business practices such as environmental management are expected. A point system then determines the applicable Star-rating.

  • 2. Who is in charge of the implementing this new system? +

    The Department of Tourism Office of Tourism Standards and Regulations (OFTSR) administer, manage and operate the National Accommodation Standards.

  • 3. Who carries out the assessments for the Star-rating and how often do these take place? +

    The assessment, or ‘audit’, is conducted every two years, is performed jointly by DOT Area Officers, and independent third party auditors who are professionals currently working in the tourism industry. The DOT team uses the new National Accommodation Standards to determine if hotels and resorts meet or exceed visitor expectations.

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Regulatory Impact Assessment

  • 1. What is RIA? +

    RIA, or Regulatory Impact Assessment, involves making regulations more ‘business friendly’ and aims to cut any unnecessary ‘red tape’. The RIA process promotes assessment of the impacts of a regulation using proper methodology, including cost-benefit analysis and stakeholder consultation. The process ensures that the regulations are effective and efficient in achieving policy objectives while minimizing costs on business and tourists.

  • 2. What is a RIS? +

    A Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) is a document produced using the RIA framework. A RIS is circulated to tourism industry stakeholder and the public, allowing them to comment on new regulations before they become law. A RIS is released for public consultation for a minimum of 30 days, during which time comments and feedback are invited. Feedback and recommendations from the tourism industry or public can help to improve the quality of regulations and/or identify areas for improvement. The RIA process and RIS document allow affected parties to have their say, and provides government with valuable insights and perspectives to ensure that regulations are well-targeted and effective.

  • 3. Who is the responsible organisation to execute the implementation? +

    Implementation of regulatory changes is executed by concerned national agencies or local government units (LGUs). The PICTourism project provides guidance to the concerned national agency or local government unit.

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PICTourism Components

Tourism Industry Skills Development Program

Hotel and Resorts Quality Assurance & Accreditation System

Regulatory Impact Assessment

DOT-ADB-Canada Improving Competitiveness in Tourism is a technical assistance project for the Department of Tourism, administered by the Asian Development Bank and funded by the Government of Canada.

Contact Us

PICTourism Main Office
New DOT Building Penthouse, 351 Sen Gil Puyat,
Makati City, Metro Manila 1200, Philippines
(+632) 459 - 5200 / (+632) 459 - 5230

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