Chairman of Tourism Malaysia, Dr. Siew Ka Wei, launched the Chinese Travellers Affairs Helpdesk at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA).
Located near the Immigration counters at the arrival halls of KLIA and KLIA2, the Helpdesk is meant to assist the entry of Chinese tourists by providing Mandarin language support at two of the busiest airports in Malaysia.
In the first phase of the set-up, the Helpdesk will operate daily beginning 1 September from 7 pm to midnight when most flights from China arrive. The month of October will see the operation hours extended from 5 pm to 1 am to accommodate higher tourist traffic.
A total of four Mandarin-speaking volunteers will be on duty every day, i.e. two at KLIA and two at KLIA2, to ease any communication issues between Chinese tourists and Immigration officials. The volunteers will also be able to provide additional on-arrival information to Chinese tourists unfamiliar with the airports.
Dr. Siew said, “China is one of the biggest tourist-generating markets, with recent reports forecasting that the world will be seeing 200 million tourists from China making outbound trips by the year 2020. Anticipatingthis trend, Tourism Malaysia is pleased to launch the Chinese Travelers Affairs Helpdesk today, as part of our efforts to enrich the Chinese tourist experience at our shores and provide a smooth travel experience for Chinese tourists arriving in Malaysia.”
This initiative was made possible thanks to the coordinated efforts of Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad, Immigration Department of Malaysia, the Embassy of China in Kuala Lumpur and the Malaysia China Welfare Advisory Society (MCWAS).
Dr. Siew added, “We sincerely thank all parties involved for working together with us to ensure that Chinese tourists arriving into Malaysia will have a positive experience at the airport and a good first impression of Malaysia.”
A review of Malaysia’s tourism performance in 2016 and the first quarter of 2017 indicate that tourist arrivals from Chian continues to be on the rise after the slowdown in 2014. A total of 2.1 million tourists from China to Malaysia was recorded in 2016 while the first quarter of 2017 saw 551,378 Chinese tourists arriving in Malaysia.
Tourist arrivals from China to Malaysia has grown by 4% and 26.7% in 2015 and 2016 respectively. The positive outcome is attributed to the easing of travel formalities for Chinese tourists as well as improved connectivity. There are currently 470 flights per week connecting China and Malaysia.
“These recent efforts to improve visa services and now the setting up of the Chinese Travelers Affairs Helpdesk to improve the airport experience have made it easier for tourists from China to travel to Malaysia. We believe that these initiatives will boost the confidence of more Chinese to choose Malaysia as their holiday destination”, declared Dr. Siew.