MIRI: Sarawak was given a boost yesterday when Royal Brunei Airlines (RBA) brought in Australian travel agents to the state on a familiarisation tour.
“There is certainly a market for jazz and this is definitely a product catering for different segments of the market. After trekking in the tropical rainforest, they can relax and have a good time in the festival,” said RBA sales account manager Carol Baker.
The airlines yesterday played host to 10 Australia agents on a familiarisation trip to both Mulu National Park and Borneo Jazz.
According to Baker, the agents on the trip were mostly Borneo wholesalers and specialists offering special packages to Sabah, Brunei and Sarawak.
“They specialise in adventure and trekking holidays. They have come to experience what Sarawak has to offer to different Australian tourist market,” said Baker adding that Thailand, Fiji and Bali were traditional destinations among Australians.
The airline is looking at Borneo as a new exciting and energetic destination.
It is becoming a trend among Australians to appreciate nature through activities such as jungle trekking, caving, and boating.
The familiarisation trip is also to illustrate to the Australian agents the easy connectivity from Brunei to Miri by road (three-hour drive).
Meanwhile, Sarawak Tourism Board chief executive officer Rashid Khan told The Borneo Post that the initiative was in response to the board’s trip to Australia where they had marketing talks with Royal Brunei Airlines in Brisbane and Tourism Malaysia’s Sydney office.
Both RBA and Tourism Malaysia have agreed to combine the Borneo destinations (Brunei, Sabah and Sarawak) for the familiarisation trip.
According to Rashid, the trip is also to promote Miri as the gateway to Mulu National Park and other tourist products in the region.
It is also to introduce Borneo Jazz as a new product and encourage them to turn it into a tourist package.