Selling Sabah Down Under To Boost Australian Arrivals

Sabah representatives at the Seminar, Suzaini Ghani and Cassie Forsythe (seated second left and left) from STB, Kueh Lian See and Amy Yong (SSL), Lawrence Chin (Tabin Wildlife), Hisham Abdul Samad (Ming Garden), Evangeline Tseu (Grandis), Marcel Siap (UMS),Timothy Teo (BET) and Richard Skewes (Sutera Harbour’s GSA) with officials from Royal Brunei Airlines.

KOTA KINABALU: A winning partnership with the industry’s best has proven to be the right way to stimulate new businesses for tourism in Sabah.

Arrivals from Australia to Sabah have been very encouraging despite the fact there is only one direct flight from Perth to Kota Kinabalu, according to a statement issued by Sabah Tourism Board.

However, it added that continuous effort is needed to further boost the numbers.

With that in mind, STB and Royal Brunei Airlines held a joint seminar in Melbourne recently to present Sabah to agents down under.

Suzaini Ghani, STB deputy General Manager (Marketing) said, “Our private sector had the opportunity to present their product direct to the Australian agents. Turnout to the seminar was almost 100 which is really good according to Australian standards.”

Sabah’s private sector also participated at the Travel Industry Expo which is a business-to-business expo to network and meet new agents.

Borneo Eco Tours, UMS Eco Tours & Discovery, Sutera Sancturay Lodges, Grandis Hotel, Ming Garden and Tabin Wildlife Resort participated at the expo, while Sutera Harbour Resort attended the Seminar represented by their Australian GSA.

RBA flies daily from Melbourne to Kota Kinabalu via Bandar Seri Begawan with an average 80 percent load factor according to RBA. Melbourne, along with Sydney and Perth are the top three best outbound for Australia.

Last year, arrivals from Australia to Sabah increased by 8.7 percent (30,139) compared to 2015.