Sabah tourism players want to leverage on the massive supporters of Miss World global events to make the state their travel destination.
Sabah Association of Tour and Travel Agents (Satta) chairman Datuk Seri Winston Liaw believes this can be realised via their collaboration with the Miss World Malaysia Organisation.
"This is an opportunity for us to promote Sabah globally to supporters of the event via the Miss World platform," said Liaw ahead of the 2021 Sabah Virtual Travel Fair (SVTF2021), which is being organised by Satta on Tuesday.
On that day, Satta will be hosting a unique interactive media conference held virtually at 2pm. It permits all registered visitors to SVTF2021 to participate in it.
It is expected to draw a virtual audience of 5,000 people, he added.
Recently-crowned Miss World Malaysia, Dr Lavanya Sivaji who will be representing the country to the grand final in Puerto Rico this December, will join in the virtual conference, he said.
The Miss World Festival is watched by over one billion viewers annually.
Fans and supporters who wish to greet and send words of encouragement to the beauty queen may do so during the live media conference, Liaw said.
2021 Miss World Malaysia first runner-up Anya Kimberly, a Sabahan, will host the SVTF2021 ceremony.
She will showcase Sabah's rich culture while introducing special travel deals offered by exhibitors.
"These beauty queens have dedicated themselves to their social mission to serve the community selflessly, and helping those in need.
"We share these same values and hope to work together to help one another through these difficult pandemic times," said Liaw.
He urged Malaysians to take advantage of the event to get highly-discounted tourism-related flash deals.
"Holidaymakers can now plan for holidays and dream vacations with the Malaysian government recently announcing plans to lift national and international travel restrictions in the coming months.
"These special one-time promotions are expected to be a big hit during the fair," said Liaw.
By pivoting into digitalisation, he said Satta aims to provide visitors with a digital edition of a travel fair to bring together signature players around the world to prepare for a revitalisation of the tourism industry.
Over 50 booths with more than 1,000 travel packages will be offered during the two-week fair by established travel agencies, hoteliers and major airlines.
He said with a recent surge of demand for flights within Malaysia, consumers seem to be confident to travel after the industry was adversely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
"The industry is hopeful and expecting an influx of visitors to Sabah, tourism-related businesses are adjusting to the new normal, making preparations to receive travellers."
Meanwhile, among the penalists invited to the virtual media conference include state Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister Datuk Jafry Ariffin, Sabah Tourism Board chairman Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia president Tan Sri Dr Goh Tian Chuan, Sabah United Chinese Association president Datuk Susan Wong, 2019 Miss World Malaysia Alexis SueAnn and several other captains of the industry.
The SVTF2021 is supported by Tourism Malaysia, Sabah Tourism Board, Taiwan Tourism Board, Sabah International Convention Centre (SICC), Kadazandusun Cultural Association Sabah (KDCA) and few others.
For every registered visitor at the media conference, the Miss World Malaysia Organisation pledges a sponsorship of RM1 to support the social mission of 2022 Miss World Malaysia contestants.
To register for the media conference, please click on the following link: https://sabahtravel2021.gotovirtualfair.com/live
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