By Jennifer Catan-Tilos
DUMAGUETE CITY (PIA) — A total of 249 tricycle drivers in the city are now officially considered tourism-oriented drivers after having completed a workshop recently.
In a tourism awareness tour guiding workshop, the drivers as front liners were trained in tour guiding to help them deliver a better Dumaguete experience for local and foreign tourists.
City Tourism Officer Woodrow Maquiling Jr. said the activity inculcates drivers’ responsibilities in the tourism industry.
“In every tourist that comes to Dumaguete, before they reach the hotel or in tourism office, the first person they meet are the tricycle drivers, so it is necessary for them to be capacitated,” he said.
The interactive sessions focused on enhancing the interpersonal skills of the drivers.
The driver-participants were able to understand tourism trends, components and the different cultural backgrounds of the top 10 foreign tourists visiting the city.
Activities on simulation exercises through actual city tour and tour guiding techniques were also taught by accredited tour guides in the province.
The Traffic Management Office also reminded the trike drivers of the various traffic rules and regulations.
With this, the organizers took the opportunity to address the present traffic issues involving tricycle drivers in the city such as overcharging wherein a mutual agreement and commitment were attained by both parties.
Dumaguete City has an estimated number of 2,500 operating tricycle drivers.
The city registered nearly 500,000 tourists in 2015, both foreign and domestic, who utilize this mode of transportation in exploring the city.
Dumaguete City has been recognized as the 5th Best Place to Retire in the World, the ATOP- DOT Pearl Awardee on Best Tourism Practices, and just recently it was dubbed as the No. 1 Destination in Asia preferred by young Chinese Tourists. (rmn/jct/PIA7-Negros Oriental/This article was first published at PIA website on Feb. 26, 2016)