PUTRAJAYA, Feb 24 — Malaysia will prioritise experiential tourism to attract foreign tourists to the country when the country’s international borders are open, Tourism Malaysia’s Domestic and Event Division senior director Iskandar Mirza Mohd Yusof said.
Iskandar Mirza, who is also Tourism Malaysia’s interim deputy director-general (planning) said during the Covid-19 pandemic period, tourists preferred less-crowded tourist locations to ensure safety from being infected with the virus.
“Tourists prefer experiential tourism and this is what we will emphasise (when the borders are open). Large-scale tourism was poor during the pandemic. For a start, maybe we can start for small groups,” he said at a press conference after officiating My Destination Sabah & Labun Meet Johor & Putrajaya Roadshow 2022 here today.
The experiential tourism-based products involved attractive destinations and would bring tourists closer to culture, heritage, food as well as community-based tourism.
On February 8, the National Recovery Council (MPN) suggested that the country’s international borders be reopened as early as March 1 without the mandatory quarantine requirement.
NRC chairman, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the Health Ministry (MOH) is in the final stage of preparing the standard operating procedure (SOP) for the reopening the country’s borders before presenting it to the Cabinet for approval.
Commenting on the matter, Iskandar Mirza said Tourism Malaysia was prepared for the reopening of the country’s borders as it would be able to revive the tourism industry that has been heavily hit by the pandemic.
“We need to see the stipulated SOP for the opening of the borders. All decisions are under the National Security Council (MKN),” he added.
Tourism Malaysia, is an agency under the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture Malaysia, focusing on promoting Malaysia as a preferred tourism destination.
Meanwhile, Sabah Tourism Board Chief Executive Officer Noredah Othman said community-based tourism products in rural areas can attract local and foreign tourists.
“Sabah and other states have various tourism and cultural products that can be introduced to tourists,” she said. — Bernama