The Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) Travel Fair 2019 which opened to the public starting yesterday (March 15) had a record turnout on its first day with 27,402 as the association sets a target of 110,000 visitors and a turnover target of RM 210 million.
The 47th edition of the MATTA Travel Fair featured 1,364 exhibitions booths spanning seven exhibition halls at the Putra World Trade Center.
The event was officiated by the Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi, the Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, together with Datuk Christina Liew, Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment of Sabah, Datuk Musa Yusof, Director General of Tourism Malaysia and Datuk Tan Kok Liang, President of MATTA this morning.
Datuk Tan mentioned in his opening speech that domestic tourism, as one of the key anchors of the tourism industry, was expected to continue its growth trajectory with aggressive promotion and marketing awareness on its local tourism products and MATTA has been developing and promoting domestic travel strongly, with two halls dedicated to domestic travel exhibitors comprising of tour and travel agencies, and 10 State Tourism Organizations.
Halls 1, 2 and 3 and the linkway meanwhile feature international tour and travel agencies, including 14 National Tourism Organizations such as Taiwan, Japan, South Korea, Macau, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand and Turkey.
He said new destinations being promoted at the fair include Guam, Fiji, Algeria and Tunisia while cruise holidays are gaining popularity.
Taiwan was named the “Asia’s Favorite Destinations” while Sabah was picked “Malaysia’s Favorite Destination” at the 47th MATTA Travel Fair 2019.
Taiwan Tourism Bureau director Abe Chou said Taiwan has a rich and diverse cultural history, cultural landscapes, and recreational resources which are suitable for Malaysians to explore and the country attracted 526,129 Malaysian visitors last year and is expected to see a growth this year as the country improve its Muslim travel environment. Taiwan is ranked fifth in the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Global Muslim Travel Index (GMTI).
Meanwhile, Sabah set a new record for the highest tourism receipts in 2018 with RM8.34 billion on the back of a record-high 3.879 million arrivals, an increase of 6.6% in tourism receipts and a 5.3% increase in arrivals compared to 2017.
Visitors to MATTA Fair 2019 that made minimum purchases of RM 100 (for domestic) or RM 300 (for international) at the event can take part in the MATTA Fair Domestic and International Buyer’s Contest
“MATTA is giving away travel vouchers worth RM5,000, RM3,000 and RM1,000 as some of the main prizes for the domestic buyer’s contest, with round-trip tickets to domestic destinations courtesy of Malaysia Airlines and Firefly also up for grabs,” he said.
In the international contest, the grand prize is two return business class tickets to London.
Visitors to the MATTA Fair will have to pay RM4 per person to enter, but it’s free for children under 12.
Tomorrow (March 17) is the last day for the event which is opened from 10am to 9pm.