Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Penang to Review Existing Tourism Packages

IT’S “high time” that Penang reviewed its existing tourism packages to see whether they were attractive enough or needed improvement.

State Tourism Committee chairman Teng Chang Yeow said the call made by the newly-launched Association of Tourism Attractions Penang (ATAP) chairman Eddy Low was timely as Penang could not continue relying on its existing packages.

Low, in his opening speech at the launch in Island Plaza, said there was an urgent need to re-look the packages promoting Penang.

He said the state’s tourism was suffering from the bell curve syndrome with the same tourism products and packages, some of which were getting old.

Low urged the Penang Tourism Action Council and the state to combine efforts to aggressively market the packages.

Teng said although it was the private sector’s role to introduce, repair and restructure tourism packages, the state had always helped market tourist destinations.

“Tour guides and inbound agents must change their mindset by including tourist spots which charge entrance fees in their tourism packages.

“They should not concentrate on places which offer free entrance to enjoy commissions based on sale of goods,” he added.

Teng said everyone should work together to address the issue instead of just lamenting that there was lack of tourism products and packages.

ATAP, which has been in existence since 2003, currently has 31 members, which include Cheah Kongsi, Craft Batik Sdn Bhd, CKC Food In-dustries Sdn Bhd, Sentral Technology Institute, Tropical Spice Garden and Penang Butterfly Farm.

The organisation was formed to create an active network of private and government-run tourism attractions and improve the image of Penang among travellers.

Source : STAR
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