Due to the year-end month-long school holiday and Chinese New Year celebration in January, the bookings for hotel rooms in Johor Baru is picking up.
Schools nationwide are closed from November 3 to December 31 and the Chinese people worldwide will usher in the Year of the Rat on Jan 25, increasing the tourism of the state, altogether.
Ramada by Wyndham Meridin Johor Baru sales and marketing director Betty Yeoh said to date, 70% of its 644 rooms were booked for November and December.
She said the coming two weeks will see hotel occupancy rate to go up as many working parents may opt to take leave to spend with their children.
“Room bookings for the Chinese New Year is picking up with 80% full for the celebration weekend,’’ said Yeoh.
The room bookings were mainly from tour groups from China, Taiwan, and South Korea who wanted to escape winter in their home countries.
Yeoh said there were also Malaysians from outside the state visiting families and relatives in Johor Baru and Singaporeans who preferred to stay at the hotel.
Renaissance Johor Baru Hotel marketing and communications head Hezrin Ali said bookings for the 345-room hotel started from last month with Singaporeans making up 50% of hotel guests while 30% are Malaysians from other states and 20% foreigners.
Hezrin said many Malaysians visiting Singapore would opt to stay at hotels in and around Johor Baru as the rates were much lower compared to room rates in the city.
Meanwhile, Johor tourism, women development, and family committee chairman Liow Cai Tung said the state wanted to encourage more visitors to extend their stay in Johor.
She said statistics showed that the average stay for a tourist to Johor is 2D/1N. They hope to see them extending their stay to one more day.
Liow said continuous marketing and promotion efforts were needed to attract more Chinese tourists to Johor, including having more direct flights connecting Senai International Airport with other cities in China.
They only have a direct flight connecting Johor Baru with Guangzhou for now and are looking at the possibility of having a direct flight with another major city in China.
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