Johor to boost tourism, eyes Indonesian travelers

Johor to boost tourism, eyes Indonesian travelers

Indonesia is the second-largest contributor of tourists to Johor, Malaysia, and the state is aiming to attract more visitors from the archipelago, according to Johor Tourism Board steering head Abdul Malik Ismail.

Last year, 1.3 million Indonesian tourists visited the state, while 10.6 million came from Singapore. In total, 14.4 million people traveled to Johor in 2017.

Malik said the Johor Tourism Board wanted to cooperate with the Association of Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA) to boost tourist arrivals in the state. 

“We want to invite more Indonesian tourists to come here,” Malik said Friday in Johor Bahru on Friday.

Indonesia is expected to contribute 3-4 million tourists to the total target of 17 million visitors in 2019, he added.

To realize the target, the state has introduced a number of programs, including medical tourism, for Indonesians. Additional destinations and facilities to open next year include Hard Rock Hotel in Desaru, an integrated tourist area in the west part of Johor.

“We will also open more direct flights from Indonesian cities to Johor,” he told The Jakarta Post.

ASITA chairman Asnawi Bahar said the Johor Tourism Board signed an agreement with members of ASITA to provide incentives to tour and travel agencies that could send more Indonesian tourists to the state.

Asnawi said he had also called on the board to help Indonesia boost tourist arrivals from the state because ASEAN was still a major market for Indonesian tourism, in addition to China and  European countries. (bbn)