Tuesday, 31 January 2017

20 Teams From All Continents For The 22nd LE TOUR DE LANGKAWI

SHAH ALAM : All continents will be represented at the 22nd Le Tour de Langkawi to be held from February 22 to March 1st from Kuala Terengganu on the east coast of the peninsula to Putrajaya, the home of the Malaysian government.

“With the extension of the WorldTour to 37 events, we’ve faced new challenges in our process of inviting teams but we’re glad to announce that once again, the whole world will be looking at Malaysia during our event”, LTdL chief executive officer Emir Abdul Jalal declared.

Defending champions Team Dimension Data will maintain the WorldTour standard on Malaysian roads and represent Africa. Grand Tour wild cards teams Bardiani CSF and Willier Triestina will save the European flavor LTdL has had since its inception in 1996.

“Italy has been the most successful country with 75 stage victories up to date, ahead of Australia with 26”, Emir counted. “So we’ve accommodated all four Italian teams who wanted to come, as well as IsoWhey Sports Swisswellness for the first time. Their motivation to compete in LTdL is enormous and there’s always a place here for Australia.”

Both North and South America will be represented with returning Unitedhealthcare Professional Cycling Team while Manzana Postobon Team from Colombia will make their debut. “This is the former team of Nairo Quintana and Esteban Chaves and the former sponsor of the pioneers of Colombian cycling in the 80s”, Emir said. “We’re delighted to have them as Le Tour de Langkawi always has a large number of followers in Colombia through social media and TV networks.”

Asia will have the largest contingent with 12 teams on the start list, which is one more than last year. “We don’t forget our roots”, Emir insisted. “Le Tour de Langkawi is Asia’s premier bicycle race. It’s the oldest UCI H.C. stage race on this continent. With all the requests we received, we could have filled up the start list with European teams only but we believe it’s our duty to give priority to the Asian cyclists. For them, it’s a fantastic opportunity to challenge the teams from the Tour de France and the Giro d’Italia.”

“We want a very clean race, so our selection policy excluded the teams with a strong doping history”, Emir added. All Asian countries with a solid cycling culture will make their way to Kuala Terengganu for the teams presentation on February 21st alongside three Malaysian teams like in the past two years. Cyclists from China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Singapore and Kazakhstan are expected to line up.

“This year’s novelty is the emphasis on our neighbor country Thailand where cycling is booming as well”, Emir concluded. “For the first time they have a UCI-registered team with Thailand Continental Cycling Team and Singapore’s Infinite AIS has a strong base in Thailand too. With their addition, the Asian teams competition will be contested by more teams than ever. It should make the race even more intense than usual. In overall, we have a well balanced field that gives a chance to shine to cyclists from very different horizons.”

Team Dimension Data (RSA)
Androni Giocattoli (ITA)
Willier Triestina (ITA)
Unitedhealthcare Professional Cycling Team (USA)
Bardiani CSF (ITA)
Manzana Postobon Team (COL)
Nippo-Vini Fantini (ITA)
IsoWhey Sports Swisswellness (AUS)
Vino-Astana Motors (KAZ)
Terengganu Cycling Team (MAS)
Aisan Racing Team (JAP)
KSPO Bianchi Asia Pro Cycling (KOR)
Giant Cycling Team (CHN)
7-Eleven Roadbike Philippines (PHI)
Thailand Continental Cycling Team (THA)
Infinite AIS Cycling Team (SIN)
KFC Cycling Team (INA)
Keyi Look Cycling Team (CHN)
Team Sapura Cycling (MAS)
Malaysia (MAS)


Sunday, 29 January 2017

KINGDOM HEARTS Orchestra - World Tour - 2017 @ Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre ( 13 May 2017 )

In celebration of their fifteenth anniversary and the upcoming release of the latest episode, the official symphonic concert of KINGDOM HEARTS is set to enchant the world landing in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 13th May 2017 with a special guest appearance!

A full symphonic orchestra will perform a selection of the best and most beloved music from the original soundtrack of the whole saga. The concert will feature more than 70 musicians on stage, with amazing HD video cinematics supervised by director Tetsuya Nomura himself. The long awaited official orchestral concert is about to start, so prepare to unleash again the power of the Keyblades and don’t miss this new adventure and experience!

A Message from the Director and the Music Composer

"The idea of a KINGDOM HEARTS concert has been in the works for several years, but even so, I was astonished to learn that our music would be performed by a full orchestra, in other countries no less. I’ve been given the opportunity to oversee the creation of the title, logo, and many other aspects of this amazing production, and as the director of the series, I am confident that what we’ve created will touch the hearts of our beloved fans everywhere.

The World Tour is slated for 2017, the same year as the KINGDOM HEARTS 15th anniversary. In the meantime, fans will get a chance to explore the world of KINGDOM HEARTS HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue, which is coming out later this year. I hope the excitement and joy they get from the experience will only increase their anticipation for the release of KINGDOM HEARTS III." Tetsuya Nomura, Director of the KINGDOM HEARTS series. 

“Please have a KINGDOM HEARTS orchestral concert.”

I heard this quite often, and it echoed my own feelings. I’ve wanted to have a concert for some time, and I’m happy to announce that it’s finally become a reality. When I began composing for the KINGDOM HEARTS series, I couldn’t even dream this day would come. But it has, thanks to our beloved fans. This concert and the music of KINGDOM HEARTS could not have existed without their undying support. I can’t thank them enough. The concert will encompass my feelings toward the series and those dear to me around the world. I look forward to seeing everyone there! Yoko Shimomura, Composer for the KINGDOM HEARTS series.


Saturday, 28 January 2017

Weddings @ Seri Pacific Hotel Kuala Lumpur

-Seri Pacific Hotel Kuala Lumpur.
Website : http://www.seripacifichotel.com

Temple enters book of records with giant artworks

PETALING JAYA: The iconic Thean Hou temple has entered the Malaysia Book of Records after unveiling three giant artworks in its vicinity on Chinese New Year’s eve.

The temple committee from the Selangor and Federal Territory Hainan Association set up the biggest 3D Metal Rooster Paper-Cutting Artwork, the biggest 3D Solar Terms metal panel Paper-Cutting Artwork and the biggest Chinese Chess Set replica.
The installations were part of the temple’s Chinese New Year celebration.
According to a statement from the temple, the Paper-Cutting Artwork, entirely made of metal, features the traditional Chinese paper-cutting art as its main theme.
It was inspired by the Chinese traditional calendar and aims to highlight the need to respect the natural laws while advocating ancient Chinese folk culture.
The giant metal rooster paper-cutting artwork is equipped with a motor system that allows it to rotate 360°.
The rooster is lantern-lit, to signify a bright future and as a guide for the new lunar year.
The Chinese Chess Set replica was built to portray the pattern of the chessboard game which resembles the ancient Chinese dynasties of Chu and Han.
Association president Dr C.Y. Tang said the Thean Hou temple was not just a place of worship but also a centre to promote Chinese culture and tradition.
“It has become a major attraction for international and local tourists especially during the Chinese New Year.
“We also organise various programmes to highlight and promote the Chinese culture every year,” he said in his speech text for the unveiling ceremony.
Dr Tang said about 80,000 visitors would visit the temple during each Chinese New Year period.
“To further promote tourism, we hope to be able to continue developing the second phase plan behind our temple,” he said.
-thestar online.

Friday, 27 January 2017

ONE: THRONE OF TIGERS @ Stadium Negara, Kuala Lumpur ( 10 February 2017 )

Kuala Lumpur will roar with excitement once again, as ONE Championship returns to the Stadium Negara with ONE: THRONE OF TIGERS! 

With Malaysia's fiercest warriors fighting for national pride against the finest mixed martial artists in Asia, fans can expect more of the signature non-stop action that has made ONE the most exciting MMA promotion in the world today.

Get ready for a blockbuster event of sports entertainment unlike any other, and book your tickets now!

Latest updates will be at http://www.onefc.com
Audio, Photography & Videography Policy
Flash Photography and Videography are not allowed.

Other Information
No re-entry allowed.
Get your tickets from:
1. Online at www.AirAsiaRedtix.com.
2. Rock Corner outlets:The Gardens, Mid Valley (TEL: 03 - 2201 4893)
Subang Parade (TEL: 03 - 5613 1139)
The Curve (TEL: 03 - 7733 1139)
Bangsar Village (TEL: 03-22021139)
3. Victoria Music outlets:Sg Wang(TEL: 03 - 2148 7208)
Amcorp (TEL: 03 - 7956 0592)
Tropicana (TEL: 03 - 7722 2955)
4. Penang outlets:Artist Gallery, Gurney Plaza (04-637 0191)
Artist Gallery, Queensbay Mall (04-228 5648)l
5. Istana Budaya Jalan Tun Razak03 40265558

-AirAsia RedTix.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Grab Your Early Bird Tickets For The MOTOGP Beginning Now!

SEPANG, 26 January 2017 MotoGP fans, be sure to grab discounted tickets for the seat of your choice before they start selling out! From now until 31 March 2017, Sepang International Circuit (SIC) is offering tickets for the 2017 Shell Malaysia Motorcycle Grand Prix at discounted Early Bird prices. Fans can grab tickets from as low as RM44.25!
“With the crowds at the Malaysia MotoGP continuing to grow year-on-year, we are motivated to offer fans the opportunity to not just grab tickets of their choice as early as possible, but to also enjoy attractive discounts when they purchase their tickets early. Last year, tickets were sold out a month prior to race day, so we encourage all fans to secure their tickets now to avoid disappointment later. The coming season promises to be very exciting. We have the reshuffling of the big names in the MotoGP class, various riders moving up to another class, and we are undoubtedly also looking forward to seeing our Malaysian riders Hafizh Syahrin, Khairul Idham Pawi, and Adam Norrodin as well as our SIC Racing Team rookie Ayumu Sasaki in action this year,” said Dato’ Razlan Razali, Chief Executive Officer of SIC.
Get your tickets now online at SIC’s website, walk in to the Customer Service Centre at SIC or call SIC’s ticket hotline at 03-8778 2222. Take the opportunity to watch the first pre-season winter testing of 2017 this 30 January to 1 February, from 10am to 6pm at Sepang while purchasing your tickets. Entrance to the Main Grandstand is free.

Find out all the ticket prices and discounts on SIC’s website at www.sepangcircuit.com or Facebook page at www.facebook.com/sepanginternationalcircuit.
All ticket prices stated are inclusive of 6% GST, 5% entertainment tax levied by the State of Selangor and a transaction fee of RM3 per ticket. Children below 7 may enter for free but will not be allocated a seat.


Trade unworried by closure of Tourism Malaysia offices nationwide

The Malaysian trade is not fretting over the government’s closure of 14 state Tourism Malaysia offices nationwide, instead seeing it as an opportunity for better deployment of resources in other more needed areas.

The closures, according to Malaysia’s tourism and culture minister Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, were to avoid job duplication with state agencies and result in monetary savings for the government.

“Although all Tourism Malaysia offices will be closed, we will create five information offices – in Penang for the northern region, Terengganu for the eastern region, Johor for the southern region, and Sabah and Sarawak,” said Mohamed Nazri, who was quoted as saying in Bernama.

Urging the better utilisation of resources, Uzaidi Udanis, president of Malaysian Inbound Tourism Association, suggested: “The affected staff could be relocated to do enforcement work. There is a dire need for better enforcement to curb illegal taxis, and illegal travel agents operating without licenses. There is a lack of enforcement officers.”

An inbound agent, Ally Bhoonee, executive director at World Avenues, told TTG Asia: “This move will not affect international promotions because we deal with the head office directly and not with the state. I don’t think domestic tourism will suffer as the state tourism boards are there to promote the state.”

Meanwhile, Sam Cheah, president of the Malaysian Association of Hotels, hopes the savings of RM6 million (US$1.4 million) will be used on international promotions to further increase the number of tourist arrivals into Malaysia.

Tourism Malaysia is also in the midst of closing its offices in Los Angeles, New York, Stockholm and Johannesburg to consolidate its marketing activities into more effective markets where there are direct flights.

-TTG Asia.

2nd Selangor Wellness Living Expo 2017 @ Setia City Covention Centre, Malaysia ( 24 ~ 26 February 2017 )

Happening at the Expo:

- Showcase of wellness and health related exhibitors, sponsors and presentations all under one roof

- Spend one-on-one time asking questions and learning from an incredible group of leading healthcare and wellness professionals and specialists.

- Opportunity to sample the most innovative health, lifestyle and wellness enhancing products and services.

- Free check up and stand a chance to win prizes.


- Empower the individuals to take charge of their own health.

- Make informed decisions on their healthcare.

- Work in partnership with the healthcare providers for wellness and sustainable health.

- Understand the health options that improve physical, mental and emotional wellbeing.

- Showcase the hospitals in Selangor for health tourism.

- Overall keep the citizens healthy and productive.


-Tourism Malaysia Selangor facebook.

Tuesday, 24 January 2017

AirAsia X Cleared To Fly To The US

SEPANG, 24 JANUARY 2017: AirAsia X has received clearance from the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) to fly to the US.

The airline is the first Asian low-cost carrier to secure approval to operate scheduled passenger flights to the US.

The approval allows AirAsia's long-haul, low-cost sister airline to operate services to any destination within the US.

AirAsia X is currently considering flights to several US states including Hawaii as part of its route expansion plans.

AirAsia X Group CEO Datuk Kamarudin Meranun said, "This is a major milestone for AirAsia X. Our expansion up until now has concentrated on Asia, Australasia and the Middle East, and we are excited about our first foray into an entirely new market as we look beyond Asia Pacific."

"I'm confident travellers will respond well to our award-winning service and the kind of connectivity we can offer with our Fly-Thru product. As part of our expansion plans, we are also looking to resume our very popular London route, and are working towards securing the necessary approvals."

He added: "None of this would be possible without our Allstars, especially Group Chief Operating Officer Anaz Ahmad Tajuddin, who sadly passed away two weeks ago. We wouldn't be where we are today if he had not laid the foundations with his blood, sweat and tears, and his bravery in the face of cancer showed us the true meaning of strength. This is for you, Anaz."

A pioneer in travel and technology, AirAsia offers a wide range of innovative products such as mobile app, extensive self-service options, inflight wifi, inflight entertainment, premium coffee, online duty-free shopping, Premium Flex and Fly-Thru.

Fly-Thru allows guests to seamlessly connect to anywhere within AirAsia's wide network with just one stop at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Asia's No. 1 low-cost carrier hub - and other convenient transit hubs in Thailand and Indonesia, without having to pass through immigration and with their baggage checked through to the final destination.

AirAsia Group boasts an extensive route network to over 120 destinations in Asia Pacific, including some 60 unique routes within the Asean region, and unmatched flight frequencies.


Hotel Element berkonsep mesra alam dibuka April

KUALA LUMPUR 23 Jan. – Marriot International Inc. memperke­nalkan hotel mesra alam yang pertama di Asia Tenggara, Hotel Element Kuala Lumpur (Hotel Element) yang menawarkan pengalaman baharu kepada pe­ngunjung melalui konsep dan keunikan tersendiri.

Naib Presiden Pengurusan Jenama Marriot International Asia Pasifik, Nelli Yong berkata, hotel tersebut akan dibuka kepada pengunjung pada April ini dengan tarikan tersendiri menerusi pendekatan mesra alam tetapi mengekalkan ciri-ciri moden.

Kata beliau, jenama Element menunjukkan pertumbuhan yang sangat pantas didorong oleh permintaan tinggi daripada pelanggan yang gemarkan suasana moden tetapi masih mengekalkan kelestarian alam.

“Kami sangat bangga dan te­ruja untuk membawakan Element ke Kuala Lumpur dan pas­tinya suasana yang selesa dapat menarik ramai pengunjung untuk menginap di sini.

“Terdapat 252 bilik disediakan, bermula dari unit studio sehingga kepada suite yang dilengkapi tiga bilik tidur. Dengan ketinggian 275 meter, pe­ngunjung akan di­sa­ji­kan pe­man­dang­an 360 dar­jah sekitar Lembah Klang,” kata­nya dalam satu kenya­taan di sini hari ini.

Tambah Nelli, Hotel Element menyediakan pelbagai kemudah­an serta memberi lebih ruang peribadi kepada pengunjung supaya mereka sentiasa selesa dan santai sepanjang penginapan.

Katanya, antara kemudahan yang disediakan seperti pusat kecergasan, sewaan basikal, kolam renang, bilik mesyuarat, restoran serta kemudahan jalur lebar mudah alih (WiFi).

“Selain itu, lokasi hotel yang strategik menjadi nilai tambah kerana terletak berhampiran Stesen Transit Aliran Ringan (LRT) Ampang Park sekali gus memudahkan mobiliti pengunjung untuk melawat kawasan tumpuan sekitar ibu kota.

“Kepuasan pengunjung ketika menginap dan mendapatkan perkhidmatan hotel kami akan sentiasa menjadi keutamaan,” katanya.

Hotel Element mempraktikkan amalan penggunaan produk yang dapat menjamin kelestarian alam dalam operasinya seperti menggunakan lampu LED, ken­deraan elektrik, bahan organik dan barangan kitar semula.
-utusan online.

Monday, 23 January 2017

Tourism Malaysia Offices Nationwide Closed, Avoid Job Duplication

ALOR GAJAH, Jan 23 (Bernama) -- Tourism Malaysia offices throughout the country will be closed with immediate effect to avoid job duplication with the state agencies in promoting tourist attractions.

Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz said the closure of the 14 tourism offices, however, did not involve the termination of services of the staff because they would be absorbed into the ministry's headquarters and other departments.

He said the move was expected to be able to save about RM6 million in cost annually and it could be utilised for other expenses.

"Every state has its own Executive Councillor for Tourism and the State Economic Unit (UPEN), so we don't want a duplication of the tasks between the agencies and the tourism authorities in every state.

"Although all the Tourism Malaysia offices will be closed, we will create five information offices, namely in Penang for the northern region, Terengganu for the eastern region, Johor for southern region, Sabah at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport, and Sarawak at the Kuching International Airport," he said.

He disclosed this to reporters after officiating the Chinese New Year and the First Anniversary Celebration for the Freeport A'Famosa Outlet here today.

The event was also attended by his Deputy Minister Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsuddin and Secretary-General of the ministry Datuk Ab Ghaffar A Tambi as well as A'Famosa Group Managing Director Datuk Alex Lau.

On Jan 14, the ministry announced that at least four Tourism Malaysia offices abroad, namely in New York, the United States; Perth in Australia; Stockholm in Sweden; and Johannesburg in South Africa would be closed with immediate effect following the termination of Malaysia Airlines Bhd services there.

Meanwhile, Mohd Nazri projected that 30.5 million tourists would visit Malaysia throughout this year compared with 27 million last year.


IATA renews Eaglexpress’ operational safety certification

An Eaglexpress aircraft.

KUALA LUMPUR: The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has renewed the IATA Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) Operators Certification for Eaglexpress Air Charter Sdn Bhd for two years.

Eaglexpress said in a statement that the certificate, signed by IATA senior vice-president (safety and flight operations) Gilberto Lopez Meyer, confirmed that Eaglexpress had conformed to provisions of the programme manual under the IOSA programme.

This is the second time that the hajj and umrah charter flight operator has been confirmed this status.

“Eaglexpress remains proud to be one of only a few airlines that operate out of Malaysia to have reached this level of safety and performance,” it said.

According to the IATA official website, the IOSA programme is an internationally recognised and accepted evaluation system designed to assess the operational management and control systems of an airline. The total accident rate for IOSA carriers between 2011 and 2015 was 3.3 times lower than the rate for non-IOSA operators. As such, IOSA has become a global standard.

Eaglexpress’ statement comes a month after the Malaysian Aviation Commission (Mavcom) revoked its air service permit, which means it cannot fly to and from any Malaysian destination at present. The airline is awaiting a new ASP,

Eaglexpress said it was now moving from being a provider of ‘wet lease’ aircraft to becoming the leading private provider of scheduled charter flights for hajj and umrah.

“Ultimately we want to make hajj and umrah to be more accessible to the global Muslim population. Safety is the primary concern of pilgrims and their families; that is why this certification is critical. The wellbeing of pilgrims is a responsibility that we take seriously,” the airline said.

Eaglexpress (9A), which is based in KL International Airport, currently operates four Boeing 747-400 aircraft.

-thestar online.

Putrajaya penuh 
landskap unik, ikonik

PUTRAJAYA 22 Jan. - Sejak dibuka pada 1999, Put­rajaya bukan sahaja berpera­nan sebagai Pusat Pentadbiran Persekutuan, tetapi Wilayah Persekutuan ketiga ini mempunyai tarikan tersendiri khususnya dalam sektor pelanco­ngan.

Ramai tidak menge­tahui bahawa pelan pembangunan Putrajaya dilakukan dengan memaparkan konsep bandar dalam taman bagi mengekalkan elemen kehijauan, menjadikannya lokasi kunjungan orang ramai khususnya pada hujung minggu.

Kesemua 12 taman awam dibangunkan dengan konsep, tema, karakter dan persekitaran yang unik sekali gus menjadi nadi utama Pusat Pentadbiran Persekutuan ini.

Bukan sahaja dari sekitar Lembah Klang, malah ada pengunjung sanggup datang dari jauh semata-mata untuk mengunjungi 12 taman yang masing-masing mempunyai tarikan tersendiri.

Pengarah Bahagian Interpretif dan Pendidikan di Jabatan Landskap dan Taman Perbadanan Putrajaya (PPj), Asmah Yahaya berkata, antara 12 taman tersebut adalah Taman Botani yang dikenali sebagai ‘Ibu Segala Taman’, Taman Wetland (Emas Putrajaya) dan Taman Putra Putrajaya de­ngan mendapat jolokan mercu tanda Putrajaya.

Katanya, terdapat tiga lagi taman yang bakal dibina selaras Pelan Struktur Putrajaya pada masa hadapan iaitu Taman Puncak Puteri di Presint 4, Taman Rimba Desa (Presint 9) dan Taman Lindungan di Pre­sint 17 sekali gus menjadikan jumlah taman di Put­rajaya seba­nyak 15 buah.

“Setiap taman mempunyai identiti tersendiri dengan semua program dan aktiviti dibangunkan di lokasi masing-masing bersesuaian dengan semua pe­ringkat umur.

“Taman-taman awam ini bukan sekadar tempat untuk bersantai dan rekreasi semata-mata tetapi ia juga menjadi medan perkongsian ilmu mengenai alam sekitar,” katanya.

Ketika ditanya kenapa taman-taman Putrajaya menjadi tumpuan, Asmah menjelaskan hanya di Putrajaya mempunyai taman-taman yang menawarkan perkhidmatan seperti pemandu pelancong dan sewaan basikal berbanding kawasan lain.

“Malah kami hanya mengenakan caj bayaran serendah RM2 dengan perkhidmatan ditawarkan adalah berbaloi dan berpatutan,” katanya.

Antara satu daripada 1,001 rahsia pemandangan indah di sini adalah Tasik Putrajaya itu sendiri yang merupakan tasik buatan maunsia berkeluasan 650 hektar dengan air dari Sungai Chua dan Sungai Bisa, Selangor telah ditapis oleh taman paya yang meneutralkan air secara semula jadi.

Ketua Penolong Pengarah Bahagian Interpretif dan Pendidikan Taman Jabatan Landskap dan Taman Perbadanan Putrajaya (PPj), Shafini Ashraq Karim, Taman Wetland yang mendapat jolokan Emas Putrajaya berfungsi sebagai penapis dari kedua-dua sungai tersebut.

Katanya, pemandangan tanah bencah atau paya di sekeliling Taman Wetland merupakan satu keunikan kerana ia merupakan penapis semula jadi air sebelum memasuki Tasik Putrajaya.

“Sel-sel di taman ini menapis air menerusi akar-akar tumbuhan yang meneutralkannya selain menjadi tumpuan pelbagai habitat. Selain itu, Taman Wetland menjadi pilihan habitat kepada pelbagai spesiss fauna se­perti burung akuatik iaitu Pucung Serandau, Ruak-Ruak dan Pangling selain pelbagai serangga,” katanya.
-utusan online.

Middle East markets to Asia rosy on Gulf carriers' growing network

Travel agents specialising in the Middle Eastern markets are upbeat about business at the recent ATF 2017, all thanks to Gulf carriers’ continuous foray into Asia-Pacific.

They told TTG Asia that demand for South-east Asian packages are expected to rise this year, as more destinations in the region become easily accessible.

Ousama Al-Hosni, general manager of Kuwait-based Sham Tours & Travel, pointed to Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore as his star destinations, and added that interest in the Philippines is on the rise due to improving air connectivity.

Carriers that offer direct connectivity between Kuwait and Manila include Kuwait Airways and Cebu Pacific, with the former launched last year.
Ousama says outbound to the Philippines from Kuwait will rise further as more travellers come to know about the destination’s draws.

Manju Manchanda, director of Venture Planet in Sharjah, said her volume into Asia has “definitely grown” by at least 20 per cent over the past year as a result of new air links and availability of competitive fares.

Family groups and FIT travellers are especially fond of Asia, according to Manchanda who named Singapore and Malaysia as top favourites for their Muslim-friendly facilities.

“(Being able to) accommodate the dietary requirements of Middle Eastern travellers... is a big thing,” she said.

Manchanda intends to step up promotions of packages for Vietnam this year, leveraging Emirates’ new flights to Hanoi which commenced in August 2016.

Singapore-based Discovery Holidays, managing director, Rodney Yew, who specialises in the Middle Eastern market and whose company is auguably the city-state’s largest Iranian handler, said he draws many repeat travellers who favour Singapore’s easy access and constantly rejuvenated attractions.

According to Yew, the typical Middle Eastern traveller would pair Singapore with either Malaysia or Indonesia.

-TTG Asia.