The Malaysian Inbound Tourism Association (MITA) and Association of the Indonesia Tours & Travel Agencies (ASITA) West Nusa Tenggara signed a MoU last week to promote tourism between the two countries.
Both associations are eyeing the lucrative Chinese outbound market and there are plans to develop destination packages for groups, combining Malaysia and Indonesia.
MITA president, Uzaidi Udanis, said: “We hope one day that these packages will be as popular as the three-country package combining Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand.”
There are also plans to launch internship programmes for tourism students from both countries as well as an initiative to develop films showcasing tourism attractions in Malaysia and Indonesia targeted at overseas markets.
Awan Aswinabawa, chairman of A&T Holidays based in Lombok, said his company saw a 200 per cent increment from Malaysian corporates to Lombok in the first half of 2016 compared with the corresponding period in 2015.
This was largely due to improvements in air connectivity and promotions, he said. The destination was also popular with families looking for a beach holiday or for soft adventure.