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KUANTAN: Pahang recorded 14.8 million tourist arrivals last year, nearly reaching the target of 15 million visitors for Visit Pahang Year 2017.

State tourism and culture committee chairman Datuk Seri Mohd Sharkar Shamsudin said the target might have been achieved but not recorded for various reasons, such as unrecorded visitors, including foreigners who spent their nights in homestays and other unregistered accommodations. “There were tourists who visited the state with family and in big groups, but did not spend the night here.

“Events like ‘kenduri’, and family and alumni reunions took place in Pahang and many outsiders were present but these people were not included as registered tourists,” he said. Most of the homestays are run by individuals and they are not registered with the local councils or related authorities.

“Some tourists visit attractions like the Kuala Gandah National Elephant Conservation Centre but spend the night in the villages nearby.“These are among the reasons why their arrivals were not recorded,” he said after welcoming a group of Singaporeans who came via low-cost carrier Scoot at Sultan Ahmad Shah Airport here. Also present were Scoot’s chief commercial officer Vinod Kannan, Tourism Pahang general manager Datuk Ishak Mokhtar and Tourism and Culture Ministry Pahang Office director Datuk Idros Yahya.

Scoot Tigerair Pte Ltd (operating as Scoot) is a Singaporean low-cost long-haul airline owned by Singapore Airlines. Kuantan is its sixth destination in Malaysia after Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Ipoh, Langkawi, and Kuching. It started with three-times weekly flights from Singapore to Kuantan from Feb 2 onwards. Mohd Sharkar said since Pahang had launched its Revisit Pahang 2018 campaign, the flight services from Singapore via Scoot would definitely contribute to reaching the target of 15 million tourist arrivals.

Vinod said it was Scoot’s strategy to introduce unique travel experiences to Singaporeans and connecting passengers from abroad. “With such beautiful rainforests and beaches that Malaysia has to offer, we are glad to offer these potential business and leisure destinations with incredible airfares to our guests,” he said.


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