The three-day World Hospitality, Lifestyle, and Entertainment Exhibition and Conference (WHOLE PENANG 2020) began on 10th September at the Setia SPICE Convention Centre in Bayan Lepas. The opening ceremony was officiated by YB Dato’ Sri Hajah Nancy Shukri, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Malaysia.
TIN Media had organised a Hybrid Forum Series During WHOLE 2020 to connect the Live & Virtual Audience to the Experts Panel of Speakers to discuss & share the knowledge on various topics that can help the industry players to be future-ready. The hybrid forum discussion on ‘Niche Tourism - Unlocking the Edu-Tourism Potential’ where the panel members were Mr. Khoo Boo Lim – ED of Study Penang, Prof. Dr. Mohd Salehuddin Mohd Zahari, Dean - Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management, UiTM, Dr. Khong Yoon Loong, CEO - Tech Dome Penang. The discussion was moderated by Presanth Chandra - Co-Founder of TIN MEDIA.
Mr. Khoo Boo Lim – ED of Study Penang said that Penang is not only a place for tourists but also a center of educational excellence. He quoted “I think a lot of investments are done on international standard schools and colleges. It in a way creates job and opportunities and we would like to carry on that.”
He added “Penang has a lot of potential; we need to market Penang in terms of that. Also, the international students are most likely to act as an ambassador to tourism because moving forward, they will represent how beautiful Penang is, once they are back home”. Also, most importantly to promote education tourism, education quality should be best in class so that parents opt to send their children for high-quality education. Also, the government should qualify the education platform as they entertain an international audience.
Dr. Mohd Salehuddin Mohd Zahari, Dean – Faculty of Hotel and Tourism Management, UiTM said with regards to Malaysia on Edu-tourism “we’re not big enough yet as compared to big and developed countries. Malaysia started promoting Edu-tourism aggressively in 2014. In 2015, the government through the ministry of education and ministry of tourism and culture launched a one-on-one Edu-tourism package that encouraged people to come to Malaysia. As of 2018, education, Malaysia globally has 170 thousand foreign students from 135 countries but it increased till 2020 but due to the pandemic situation, this year the graph isn’t that great". Although, overall the Edu-tourism looks promising in Malaysia.
Khong Yoon Loong, CEO – Tech Dome Penang Said,” We need to change the mindset and not go the traditional way when it comes to Edu-tourism. Malaysia should focus on tourism where travelers can come and learn something about the place, history, etc. Now people are intellectual and interactive and have questions for everything they visit, eat, etc. Penang is rich in history but the guides aren’t that well-versed with Penang’s heritage and history. I feel this is something that is missing. We need to tell our story because that will be more beneficial and can draw a lot of attraction".
"Malaysia must need to have content to attract International students" Mr. Khong added.
You can watch the full show over here: http://www.tin.media/whole2020
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