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Taxi drivers get preview of Legoland's attractions


TOURISM AMBASSADORS: More than 100 taxi drivers have been selected to introduce the state’s attractions to visitors

MORE than 100 Johor taxi drivers have been selected to serve  as ambassadors for the state's tourist attractions.

The drivers were given a briefing on Legoland Malaysia and its 40-over  attractions in the Taxi Promotional Wrap at the recently refurbished Galleria@Kotaraya.

Legoland promotional stickers and brochures will displayed in the taxis.

State Tourism, Domestic Trade, Cooperative and Consumerism executive chairman Datuk Hoo Seong Chang  said, with the opening of Legoland to the public  on Saturday, it was paramount that taxi drivers were aware of the latest product in Nusajaya.

He said taxi drivers were state tourism frontliners and, as such, had an important role to play.

"I am sure they will be great and  show good manners, to help to put Johor on the world's tourist map," said Hoo.

He also urged taxi drivers to ensure that  their vehicles were clean.

During a recent trial run, taxi drivers were escorted by state  police outriders and state Road Transport Department enforcement officers  to give  them the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the route and ensure that they knew where the drop-off points were.

Hoo called for more smart partnerships and  collaborative efforts to promote and develop Johor as an international tourism destination.

Legoland Malaysia general manager  Siegfried Boerst said the  taxi drivers were given a free day-trip to the theme park.

"Legoland is a global brand but we see ourselves as a part of the local community.

"The taxi campaign will help to put the park on the map for those visiting the region.

"In turn, we hope visitors will  explore the wider area and help develop Johor as an international tourist destination.

"In order for taxi drivers to be able to share first-hand knowledge of the park's 40 rides, shows and attractions with their passengers, three hundred of them were invited to a special preview at Legoland," he added.

Mohamad Nasir Mahmood, 42, who drives a seven-seater executive limousine taxi, said the preview was an eye-opener.

"I enjoyed the rides and the food served to us at the Market Restaurant. I think it was a great idea to brief us and also equip us with the proper materials and information.

"Being the frontliners , we must be able to share our experiences. We cannot talk to people about something that we have not experienced. Now that we have  personal experience of Asia's first Legoland Park, we can do a better job," he said.

Johor is expected to receive about five million visitors every year, with  developments such as Iskandar Malaysia which will also be home to world-class theme parks such as the   Pinewood animation studio and  Puteri Harbour Indoor Theme Park.   

The taxi campaign complements the new bus and coach routes which are also being launched to help people get to Legoland from different places.

The arrival of Legoland  has been welcomed by the local community. Residents and business owners believe there will be a surge in the number of people visiting the region.

The success of Legoland is expected to directly impact the tourism market in Johor as more visitors discover the state and  the region.

It is predicted that visitor numbers will rise again when Legoland opens its Waterpark next year  and a hotel in 2014.

Legoland Malaysia is the sixth Legoland to be built in the world and the  first in Asia.

Based on the  popular Lego construction toy range, Legoland is targeted at families with children between the ages of 2 and 12.

Taxi drivers greeting Legoland’s green dragon. Pix by Roslan Khamis

JCorp chief executive officer Kamaruzamman Abu Kassim (left), Datuk Hoo Seong Chang and Siegfried Boerst drumming to launch the taxi campaign at Galleria@Kotaraya.

Taxi drivers looking at maps of Legoland Malaysia.

The taxis travelling in a convoy on the Coastal Highway.

Datuk Hoo Seong Chang and Siegfried Boerst taking the 20 minute-drive to Legoland Malaysia.

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