DOT keeps the fun going with SOS campaign, gamified challenges

3:12 pm on 18 May 2022, Wednesday

By Carby Rose Basina

For responsible people around the world, there are few things as important as the need to be responsible when it comes to tourism; tourism is both a source of hope and a source of danger for some of the world's most beautiful areas. The economic benefits of heavy traffic are offset by the chance for environmental and social problems, which is why it is critical to choose responsible and environmentally friendly travel and vacation options. Thankfully, growing awareness has resulted in increased demand for environmentally and socially responsible travel options, as well as an increase in the provision of such services.

To further encourage tourists to practice eco-friendly travels, the Department of Tourism (DOT) launched the second phase of the Save Our Spots (SOS) campaign titled, “Keep the Fun Going”.

The campaign builds on the success of the SOS phase one campaign, which was started in 2019 to teach travelers how to be responsible tourists. "Keep the Fun Going" is a gamified challenge that seeks to not only inform but also encourage travelers to participate in sustainable tourism activities.

“The DOT has been integrating sustainable tourism principles in its projects, programs and policies, even involving tourists to be part of these efforts. Through the SOS campaign, we aim to raise awareness about responsible travel and emphasize that every small act goes a long way to ensure that future generations will continue to benefit from and enjoy nature’s abundance,” said Tourism Secretary Berna Romulo-Puyat.

The Philippines is home to some of the world's most diverse ecosystems and creatures, which are threatened by climate change as well as human hazards such as over tourism and environmental neglect.

The campaign will promote a gamified experience with four eco-friendly methods to travel in order to encourage more tourists to embrace sustainable travel. The obstacles will be shown in partnership with local key influencers, and the public will be encouraged to participate in at least two of the four activities:

• The “Certified Foot Soldier Challenge” that encourages travelers to walk, hike, or bike more often;
• The “Zero-Waste Warrior”, which inspires travelers to reduce waste by avoiding single-use plastics and always bringing reusable water bottles, utensils, and shopping bags;
• The “resTOURism Advocate Challenge” that encourages tourists to volunteer in restoration efforts of communities, such as planting activities, clean-up drives, and wildlife preservation; and,
• The “Eco-Staycationer Challenge” that motivates tourists to book in eco-friendly accommodations, such as local homestays or ANAHAW-awardee hotels that take action to promote sustainability.

Participants will have a chance to win by completing at least two challenges and posting them on social media with the following guidelines:

STEP 1. Take a photo of yourself doing the challenges.
For Certified Foot Soldier,  you may use an app to track or record your steps or bike ride as proof.
For Eco-staycationer, best if you can include an eco-friendly practice of the establishment in your video. Camping and staycation trips (in a green hotel) are qualified.

STEP 2. Upload your photo.
Put a geotag and write a short description.

STEP 3. Tag the official DOT social media accounts:
Tiktok: tourismphilippines
Instagram: tourism_phl
Twitter: TourismPHL

STEP 4. Include the #KeepTheFunGoing and #ChallengeDone hashtags in your caption

STEP 5. Tag 3 of your friends in your post

STEP 6. Make sure to set your profile in public so we can see your entry

All entries will be drawn through an electronic raffle. Weekly winners will be announced every Saturday and will be notified thru Facebook Personal Message. The two grand winners, which will be chosen from all the qualified entries, will win a free trip for two to Palawan.


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