Malaysian YouTube sensation Jin Lim – better known by the monicker JinnyBoy – knows a thing or two about #foodporn envy. Ask the man what’s the best thing about travelling, he answers: “Foooooooooddddd!!”
Why? To make everyone jealous through your Instagram feed, he cheekily offers.
Lim adds that he will travel to Thailand in a heartbeat, just to enjoy the food.
“Tom yum, mango sticky rice and fried grasshoppers!” he says, when asked to name his favourite Thai food.
This Subang Jaya boy first captured local audiences’ attention through his work as a radio DJ and, later, through the popular YouTube channel JinnyBoyTV.
As a casual experiment, he made a short comedic film, Ah Wing – Malaysia’s Number 1 Salesman, which unexpectedly became a YouTube hit that received over 100,000 views over the first four days. JinnyboyTV is now one of the YouTube channels that is most subscribed to, in Malaysia.
Running a YouTube channel is bound to take its toll, which is why Lim’s idea of a great holiday veers as far away from a set schedule as possible.
“No phone calls, no e-mails, no work. Plenty of sleep, and cheap, good food,” he answers via e-mail.
The reality is that most of the trips taken by Lim are for work instead of pleasure.
“I travel mainly for work, but during my down-time I try to squeeze in as much sightseeing as I can before I leave. For example, I was in South Korea for two days on a media junket. I land on the first day, work on the second day, get eight hours of sightseeing and then ‘BUBYEE’,” he quips.
A passionate filmmaker, Lim also likes to look for dramatic sights on his travels.
“I really love exploring places, love those cinematic views with mountains and greenery,” the 33-year-old reveals.
But Lim is game for any destination, really, as long as it offers a mix of food and adventure.
“If they’re known for something, I want to try it!” he says.
Closer to home, in the Asean region, Jin has travelled to Singapore and Indonesia.
“They’re not too far from home, that’s one thing. And also the culture, it’s different but not too different from ours,” he says of Asean destinations’ wow factor.
“The currency does not hurt you as much,” he adds.
What are his favourite places in the country and region?
“I particularly love Penang, because of the food. And I love Kota Kinabalu’s beaches. Outside Malaysia, I like Pulau Macan in Indonesia,” he shares.
When it comes to the destination that makes him the happiest, Lim puts Singapore at the top of the list.
“It’s because of the friends that I have over there. It’s always a fun experience when I’m there,” he explains. And when those friends come over to Malaysia, Lim has a good holiday planned out for them.
“I always take my friends from abroad to Jalan Alor (Kuala Lumpur). You can find practically everything there. After KL, it will definitely be Penang, and the other islands for their crystal clear beaches,” he says.
Regionally, Lim says, these are exciting times for the social media scene.
“Indonesia’s YouTube scene is just booming like crazy. Vietnam too! It’s crazy because I’ve met YouTubers from these two countries and they also watch my stuff. Sometimes content has no barriers,” he offers.
But language might still create a bit of a hindrance in the region’s entertainment scene, Lim says.
“The entertainment industry in the Asean region is just booming and we know little of it because of the language barrier. Hopefully, one day, we will overcome it like how K-pop became a thing for us,” he concludes.