SINGAPORE: Tourism Malaysia has lined up an array of tourism products to woo more Singaporeans this year, says its director for Singapore, Zalizam Zakaria.
Zalizam said this year, Tourism Malaysia will continue with the existing programmes but with some adjustments which will benefit local agents, hoteliers and product owners.
He said the Familiarisation Trip, for instance, will be more focused on the less popular and less visited places in Malaysia.
"Tourism Malaysia will also promote aggressively the 'Homestay by Rail' as it is one of the most sought-after escapades for students and the senior citizens here.
"We're working closely with KTM Bhd to create new attractive holiday packages," he told Bernama today.
Zalizam said as most Singaporeans have cars, Tourism Malaysia will also promote the existing and new routes throughout Peninsular Malaysia for them to enjoy the scenic countryside and the local delicacies along the way.
For Sabah and Sarawak, Tourism Malaysia will encourage Singaporeans to 'Fly n Drive', he said.
He said the cycling enthusiasts will not be forgotten too.
"We are now currently working with few cycling clubs to bring them to cycle in Malaysia and enjoy the experience along the journey," he said.
Zalizam said Singaporeans visited all over Malaysia.
"However, we are now diverting them to visit the less popular and less visited destinations such as East Coast, Perak and Sabah and Sarawak," he said.
He said although these destinations have a lot of tourism products they have failed to attract the Singaporeans.
"The 'Visit Perak 2012' and 'Visit Kelantan 2012' have lined up a lot of activities and tourism products for our Singaporean friends to enjoy," he said.
As for Sabah and Sarawak, he said, the 'Soft Adventure' products could become the new interest for Singaporeans hungry for adventure and nature.
Going forward, he said, Malaysia will remain the key destination for Singaporeans to spend their holidays due to its close geographical proximity and ties with the country.
He said the strong bilateral relations, lifestyle similarities, appetizing food, shopping, favourable exchange rate and the increasing affordability of air travel, especially via low-cost carriers, have resulted in Singaporeans visiting Malaysia more frequently.
"This is in line with our 'Malaysia. A Million Experiences To Share' advertising campaign here," he said.
On Tourism Malaysia's Singapore vision, Zalizam said, being the major contributor in terms of arrival and tourist receipts, Singapore "is a very important market for us thus we need to keep on improving our services and maintenance of our hotels and tourism products."
"Being just neighbour next door does not mean we have to take Singapore for granted as we always wanted them to make Malaysia a 'must go' destination, be the frequent travellers, stay longer and spend more in our country," he said. -- BERNAMA