Friday, 19 October 2012

Tourism Ministry must be more creative

Source : The Star Online
Classified : Opinion

BUDGET 2013 contains goodies to benefit all Malaysians, young and old. Even the tourism sector will benefit as the Prime Minister announced that tour operators handling at least 750 foreign tourists or 1,500 local tourists annually would enjoy a three-year income-tax exemption.

However, I am a bit confused by the statement from the Tourism Ministry about bringing international and world-class attractions into the country. We have our own tourism venues, and we should continue to promote these locations to lure local and foreign tourists.

Why should we bring in international attractions which will last for only a few days or weeks, before they pack up and return home?

Besides, if we want to attract foreign tourists by selling international acts (like acrobatics from China), the foreign tourists may as well visit China where they will be able to see more of these attractions.

We should be proud of our local attractions, and we should continue to promote our unique and cultural attributes.

The Tourism Ministry should in fact work together with our local tourist attractions by engaging local professionals with vast knowledge on how to improve our presentation to foreign tourists.

Our Tourism Ministry should be more creative. It’s time to look at long-term plans for the tourism industry.


Petaling Jaya

My Feedback on above Opinion

For me, Malaysia has whole package of tourism. About bringing international and world-class attractions into the country is not a bad idea. Tourism is not all about foreign tourist coming to Malaysia, but also include local tourist.

Sure we can find acrobatic things in China! And Tomyam in Thailand, Curry in India, Sushi in Japan!
The Unique of Malaysia is we can have bits of everything in here.

Basicly, International attraction surely benefit local tourist & business.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Tourism M'sia reaches out to schools, varsities

FRANFURT: Tourism Malaysia Frankfurt in efforts to promote Malaysia here, is reaching out to schools, universities and other institutions of learning.

Its director Syed Yahya Syed Othman said besides concentrating on the usual audience of travel agents, tour operators and the like, it is also reaching out to school-going children, who also exercised influence over their parents in the choice of tourist destinations.
"We are reaching out to school-children because these are young and enquiring minds. They will remember their school visit to Tourism Malaysia's Frankfurt office and also want to know more about Malaysia as they grow up. In effect, we are creating a new constituency of potential visitors to Malaysia for the future," he told Bernama here Tuesday.
Earlier, he received an unusual visit of a group of 21 students from the Frankfurt International School, aged between eight and 10, accompanied by four teachers, to find out more about Malaysia and its various tourist attractions.
"Many of them wanted to know if Malaysia had dolphins. They were apparently interested in Malaysia's wild life and nature. Orang utans seemed to be quite popular with them.

"One little girl wanted to know if we had elephants, tigers, etc. Another boy was, surprisingly, well aware of the Petronas twin towers and wanted to know more about Kuala Lumpur," he added.
Syed Yahya said the Tourism Malaysia Frankfurt office would also be organising a visit by a group of tourism students from the Cologne Business School to Malaysia in January, next year.
They will be visiting Malaysia for 10 to 12 days and while in Malaysia will be visiting the Universiti Teknologi Mara, Universiti Sains Malaysia and the Taylor College University in Kuala Lumpur, and will be visiting Langkawi and staying at a home-stay programme to get a feel of Malaysian life, he said.
He said that tourism traffic from Germany to Malaysia had posted a 7.2 percent growth in the first six months of 2012 compared with the same period last year.
Some 64,705 Germans visited Malaysia in the January-June period this year. -- BERNAMA


Pada saya program begini memang jadi tarikan pelancong terutamanya pelajar sekolah. Memang sekolah-sekolah di Europe selalu buat lawatan belajar ke negara orang tetapi biasanya diantara negara Europe jugalah. Contohnya kelab Bahasa Spanish akan buat lawatan ke Spain, Kelab bahasa French tentulah menjadikan Perancis destinasi mereka.

Dulu saya kerja sambilan di sekolah ini dan itulah 'typical' aktiviti. Antara sebab lainnya ialah penerbangan tambang murah yang banyak ditawarkan oleh Syarikat penerbangan Easyjet, Ryanair dan lain-lain.

Jadi, kalau lawatan ke Malaysia itu tentulah susah sikit nak dirancang kerana jarah perjalanan yang lama dan kos yang mahal. Tapi kalau bayar ikut Euro / Pounds rasanya tiada masalah..

Friday, 12 October 2012

Make Malaysia a cycling destination

I ECHO the call in “Shabery: Cycling gaining popularity” (The Star, Oct 10). I wish to see this as a way of life and the making of Malaysia a cycling destination.

For this to be realised, the Youth and Sports Ministry and the Tourism Ministry must work together to popularise cycling as a lifestyle.

Cycling, as a mode of transport has long been popular in small towns across the country, and as a sport, we have had tremendous world-class success.

Now, as a healthy pursuit and a new tourism product, it has shown some promising signs ahead, despite the lack of infrastructure like biking lanes and proper parking facilities.

Ever since biking was promoted as a tourism product by the Tourism Ministry, there’s been the sprouting of bicycle shops or boutique selling cycling outfits all over the country.

The craze seems to be catching on with youths and even the elderly, in their quest for thrills and adventure or a healthy lifestyle.

It has often been said that Malaysians do not exercise regularly to keep fit and healthy. This plus the alarming reports of obesity are best tackled by popularising this healthy outdoor activity.

On the sports front, the achievement of national track cyclist Azizul Hasni Awang at the recent London Olympics, proved that we’re on the right track for the Rio Olympics.

The same can be said of biking tourism where if promoted properly will generate more revenue for the tourism sector.

Tourism packages involving cycling will tend to create an “experiential” form of tourism, where visitors can get close to the local people and places of attractions at their own leisure and pace.


Petaling Jaya

Source : The Star Online 12 October 2012

Bla bla bla : now cycling has become popular activities. I've seen growing numbers of cyclist night and day cycling around KL/Putrajaya.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Sarah Brightman, space tourist, hopes to sing on space station

Sarah Brightman, best known for her renditions of Andrew Lloyd Weber classics and a duet with Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, has booked her ticket into space.
The 52-year-old British performer has purchased a ticket to fly to the International Space Station next year, BBC reported.

“This voyage is a product of a dream, my dream. Finally, it can be a reality. I am more excited about this than anything I have done in my life to date,” she said today in Moscow, according to BBC.
Brightman must prepare for six months next year at Star City cosmonaut training center in Russia.
She will become the seventh celebrity to embark on the voyage, according to BBC.
Brightman, who booked her trip through Vienna-based Space Adventures, and two others will fly aboard the Soyuz capsule.

The timing of the voyage has yet to be determined, but her training will begin after a 2013 tour to promote her album “Dreamchaser,” The Associated Press said.
Brightman is also a UNESCO ambassador, and she hinted she might perform in space to draw awareness to the cause, the AP said.

Brightman had to pass a physical and psychological exam in order to enter the training program.
One of her early hits was “I Lost My Heart to a Starship Trooper,” in 1978.
She also starred in Weber’s productions of “Cats” and “Phantom of the Opera” in London.
Weber and Brightman married in 1984, but divorced 6 years later.
The last famous space tourist was Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte, who paid $35 million for his ticket.

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Source :

Saya suka lagu Andrea Brocelli yang berduet dengan Sarah Brightman berjudul "Time to say Goodbye"

Famed British singer Sarah Brightman smiles during her press conference in Moscow on October 10, 2012. Brightman announced today in Moscow that she will blast off next year as a space tourist to the International Space Station (ANDREY SMIRNOV/AFP/Getty Images 

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

'Hadrah' Will Be Annual Festival In Perlis

KANGAR, Oct 10 (Bernama) -- 'Hadrah', the century-old northern peninsular art performance, would be celebrated as an annual festival in Perlis, said state national culture and art director Rahmat Md Noh.

He Said the move to make it annual affair was to spur the tradisional local entertainment.

Rahmat was speaking at the 2012 Perlis Hadrah Festival here last night, which saw six groups totalling 72 'Hadrah' performers, participating in the event.

Hadrah is a type of drum ensemble used primarily as accompaniment to Islamic religious singing.

It comprises fame drums, gong and between eight and 10 'rebana' (traditional drum), among others.

Other than the Malay language, some of the songs are in the archaic language of 'Noge' entitled 'om pa sa ya re' and 'ayu hei kam pare'.


"Hadrah adalah kesenian menggunakan kompang tetapi saiz gendangnya lebih besar dan masih mengekalkan lirik nyanyian bahasa purba yang disebut bahasa “noge” di samping lagu-lagu moden ciptaan para penggiatnya dan lagu-lagu berbentuk nasihat dan patriotik.

Hadrah pernah dimainkan di istana, majlis kenduri dan acara-acara tertentu dan ia sering diisi dengan tarian oleh kaum wanita, manakala penari lelaki yang dikenali “asuk” akan memakai topeng dengan membawa aksi lucu dalam tarian mereka. – BERNAMA"

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Foreign trips raised tourism revenue by RM635mil, says Ng Yen Yen

KUALA LUMPUR: The foreign trips and promotions by the Tourism Minister last year generated an increase of RM635.3mil in foreign exchange revenues compared to 2010, Parliament was told.

The increase could be derived from the promotions of prestige tourism and high spending tourists to Malaysia.

In 2011, foreign tourists spending in the shopping sector alone made up 30% of the total revenue for the industry, which is RM17.5bil compared to 28.7% or RM16.2bil in the previous year, the minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen told Teresa Kok (DAP-Seputeh) during Question Time.

Kok had asked the ministry to list the minister's foreign trips and tourism promotion from 2010.

Dr Ng said that the official promotional visits to various countries had also increased tourist arrivals, boost revenue as well as opening new markets.

In 2011, we went for several promotional visits, including to Iran, Indonesia, China, Russia, Philippines, Vietnam, and United Arab Emirates in conjunction with the Arab Travel Mart, Dr Ng said.

For instance, tourists from China increased by 10.6% from 1,130,261 visitors in 2010 to 1,250,536 in 2011, generating 12.6% increase in revenue from RM3.1bil to RM3.5bil.

This year, from January to August, we visited Singapore, Philippines, and Germany in conjunction with the Internationale Tourismus Borse (ITB), she said.

Source : The Star Online. by Rahimi Rahim, 2 Oct 2012

Malaysia Gets Tourism Boost From Reality TV

The year American television viewers have seen several popular American reality TV shows feature storylines dealing with Malaysia.

First, a popular series called American Chopper: Senior vs. Junior, devoted several episodes to the building of the 1Malaysia Chopper, a custom motorcycle, commissioned by Tourism Malaysia's New York Office.

The custom motorcycle was created to highlight the nation's strong cultural harmony and when it was debuted in Malaysia last March the show's star, Paul Teutul Sr. (known as Senior) came along for the big reveal.

While he was here, Teutul spoke highly of the country and praised Malaysia's "cultural diversity and its very friendly people".

According to Salahuddin Mohd. Ariffin, Vice President of Tourism Malaysia in New York, the exposure received from being on the programme really helped boost tourism here.

He says during the first half of the year, according to figures from the U.S. Department of Commerce, 119,528 U.S. travellers visited Malaysia which was a 18.9 per cent increase compared to the same period last year. Tourism Malaysia is confident its target of 235,000 U.S. visitors set by the Kuala Lumpur headquarters will be met.

We have been, so far, happy with the trend," Salahuddin added.

Another personality Anthony Bourdain, a celebrity chef and host for the television series called 'No Reservations' on the Travel Channel also helped promote Malaysia as a food destination and that programme also contributed to the boost in U.S. visitors.

Sumber : The Choice

I'm really into TV travel programme. Astro Channel TLC 707. Alway watch it during spare time but skip usually on Food programme like man vs food, take home chef, kitchen boss etc.

Piers Morgan's programme "Piers Morgan On..." is one of my favaurite series because he met a few rich people!

Penang tops list for medical tourism

GEORGE TOWN: Penang accounted for 60% of 555,000 foreign medical tourists to Malaysia last year for healthcare services.

Northern Corridor Implementation Autho-rity (NCIA) chief executive officer Datuk Redza Rafiq Abdul Razak said seven private hospitals from the Penang Health Association (PHA) recorded a revenue of RM280bil in the past year.

“A total of 333,000 people sought medical treatment from hospitals such as Pantai Mutiara Hospital, Lam Wah Ee Hospital, Mount Miriam Cancer Hospital, Loh Guan Lye Spe-cialist Hospital, Gleneagles Hospital, Penang Adventist Hospital and Island Hospital.

“Among those who came to Penang for medical tourism were from southern Thailand and Australia,” he told a press conference in conjunction with the International Conference for Cancer Caregivers yesterday.

He added that NCIA was collaborating with the association to penetrate into other countries such as Cambodia, Bangladesh and Myanmar.

“We are stepping up efforts to promote medical tourism among foreign tourists through several measures including flight incentives which would be announced later,” he said.

Penang Adventist Hospital marketing and business development manager Ng Gim Bee said the state expected an annual growth of 15% on foreign medical tourists to Penang.

“Foreigners come to Penang mostly for open heart surgeries and procedures, and dental care,” she said.

Source : The Star Online

Monday, 8 October 2012

Tourism as alternative to economic resource for Terengganu

KUALA TERENGGANU (Oct 7, 2012): The tourism industry can serve as the alternative core economic resource for Terengganu, in replacing the depleting petroleum source, said Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Said.

He said, Terengganu was rich with its interesting natural beauty such as islands, lakes, waterfalls and the state cultural heritage which appeal to tourists.

"We must transform these areas straightaway as tourist destinations. Transforming the Kenyir lake development as tax-free lake zone will be completed by 2014, to boost tourists arrival in the state," he added.

Ahmad said this at the launch of the Decoration Citra boats, in conjunction with the 50th birthday celebration of the Sultan of Terengganu, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin here last night.
He said the 2013 Visit Terengganu Year marked the importance of tourism as one of the many forms of revenue generated by the state.

He said, other than tourism, several industries would be incorporated to generate income, including iron-ore mining, biotechnology projects and aquaculture. – Bernama

Note :

1. Wow! Kenyir lake will be transform to tax-free lake zone by 2014.

2. Biotechnology project would also help in Terengganu's economic resource as RM2 billion integrated biomethionine & thiochemicals plant in the Kertih Biopolymer Park in Kerteh, Terengganu.

Perancang Bandar, Pengurus Pelancong Berperanan Penting Dalam Pembangunan Pelancongan

Kuala Lumpur, 1 Okt (Bernama) -- Perancang bandar dan pengurus pelancongan memain peranan penting memastikan pembangunan pelancongan yang lestari disokong oleh dasar-dasar perbandaran keseluruhan selain memenuhi keperluan penduduk bandar raya dan pengunjungnya.

Datuk Bandar Kuala Lumpur, Datuk Ahmad Phesal Talib berkata semua peringkat rancangan pembangunan pelancongan adalah mustahak bagi memperoleh pembangunan dan pengurusan pelancongan lestari.

"Pengalaman dari banyak kawasan pelancongan di dunia menunjukkan bahawa dalam jangka panjang, pendekatan terancang untuk memajukan pelancongan boleh membawa manfaat tanpa menimbulkan masalah selain mengekalkan kepuasan pasaran pelancongan," kata beliau semasa merasmikan Persidangan Bandar Raya Pelancongan Global (GTCC) 2012 di sini, Isnin.

Datuk Ahmad Phesal.  Gambar sumber dari NST
Ucapannya dibacakan oleh Timbalan Ketua Pengarah (Perancangan) DBKL, Datuk Zulkifli Ibrahim.

Ahmad Phesal berkata tempat-tempat yang membolehkan pelancongan berkembang tanpa menerusi perancangan sering dibelenggu masalah alam sekitar dan sosial.


Nota :

Datuk Ahmad Phesal berusia 58 tahun dilantik sebagai Datuk Bandar Kuala Lumpur berkuatkuasa 18 Julai 2012 untuk 2 tahun menggantikan Tan Sri Ahmad Fuad Ismail.