Where do Malaysians want to travel to (once it's safe) in 2021?


  • Malaysia Premium
  • Saturday, 23 Jan 2021

Many Malaysians hope they can travel and see the world again once it's safe to do so. - SHAHIDA SAKERI

After almost a year of mostly staying home and minimising travel, it’s natural for many to want to reignite their wanderlust once again.

In fact, a recent survey revealed that many Malaysians have been feeling the blues due to the travel restrictions that have been implemented to curb the spread of Covid-19 last year.

The chance to experience new sights and cultures aside, the travel restrictions also made it harder to connect with loved ones in a novel setting away from home.

Many Malaysians, according to the study from travel platform Klook, found it challenging to create happy memories with friends and family with travelling mostly out of the picture.

While it is unclear when international borders would finally open, there was some reprieve a few months back when interstate travel was allowed in most parts of the country.

Malaysians took the opportunity to go on a local holiday to popular tourist spots, such as Concubine Lane in Ipoh, when interstate travel was briefly allowed. - RONNIE CHIN/The StarMalaysians took the opportunity to go on a local holiday to popular tourist spots, such as Concubine Lane in Ipoh, when interstate travel was briefly allowed. - RONNIE CHIN/The Star

Many had taken the opportunity to discover their own backyard by going on domestic holidays and doing staycations.

The Tourism, Arts and Culture Ministry had also stepped in to further boost domestic tourism in the country.

Its minister Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri revealed that Malaysians would receive various incentives, promotions and discounts in the form of vouchers, rebates, e-vouchers and cashback in e-wallets.

More recently, however, the interstate travel ban is once again reinstated, putting a damper on travellers’ plans and tourism players’ tourism revival efforts.

But Malaysians are a resilient bunch, and will do what it takes to flatten the curve again.

In the spirit of reigniting wanderlust for when it’s safe to head out and re-discover the world, we spoke to some avid travellers to share their motivation for travelling as well as holiday plans in the future.

Shahida Sakeri, Travel Writer

Travelling can be rewarding in so many ways for Shahida. - SHAHIDA SAKERITravelling can be rewarding in so many ways for Shahida. - SHAHIDA SAKERIWhy do you love to travel?

Travelling can be rewarding in so many ways. I still remember the moment when my train journey in Switzerland had to be cancelled at the last minute due to a suicide case at the train station. Since it was already late at night, both information and ticketing counters were closed. Luckily, a kind local stranger and the ever-helpful train conductor found another connecting train for me to reach my destination.

Also, as a fan of music, travel allows me to go to concerts that are not held in Malaysia, while at the same time, enjoying the best bits of the destinations.

What do you miss most about travelling?

The feeling of freedom that it gives me, especially now after spending months at home, barely going anywhere. I also miss the feeling of being visually swept away by the beauty of each destination I visited. The world is truly beautiful, and I’m tempted to discover it as much as I can.

Once it is safe to do so, what are the destinations that you would like to visit in 2021?

Batu Batu Resort in Johor is remote, quiet, equipped with incredible facilities and located on a pristine island. It’s such an ideal getaway during this pandemic.

I also want to visit Kelantan for its endless culinary offerings! I’d love to experience the floating market at Pantai Suri – the first of its kind in the country.

And if international travel is allowed and the world is really safe again, I’d love to go to Iceland. The country is well-praised for its strong coronavirus response, so that has given me the confidence to visit.

Melissa Asha, Customer Service Executive

Melissa looks forward to meeting new people while travelling. - MELISSA ASHAMelissa looks forward to meeting new people while travelling. - MELISSA ASHAWhy do you love to travel?

It helps to open your mind and you meet different people from all walks of life. On top of that, it’s also the best way to learn about yourself.

What would be your main criteria when booking a holiday in a post-Covid-19 world?

I’ll look at the number of cases and see if it’s still super high and observe how they are managing the situation.

As for accommodation, it would definitely not be a resort as I love backpacking. Maybe I’ll avoid going during peak seasons to avoid big crowds.

Once it is safe to do so, what are the destinations that you would like to visit in 2021?

I would like to visit Australia, Thailand and the Philippines. I hope that everyone will adhere to the guidelines given by the respective countries.

Chanwon Tan, Travel Blogger

Tan likes to enjoy new things when she travels. - CHANWON TANTan likes to enjoy new things when she travels. - CHANWON TANWhy do you love to travel?

One of the reasons I love to travel is because of all the new things and the people I encounter on my journeys. I also love seeing and experiencing new things in my life.

What would be your main criteria when booking a holiday in a post-Covid-19 world?

I guess I would love to go to the countryside and also somewhere that is less crowded. I would be more encouraged to visit a country which takes a lot of precaution in the fight against Covid-19.

Once it is safe to do so, what are the destinations that you would like to visit in 2021?

Hokkaido (Japan) to enjoy the hot springs and famous snow crab during winter. I would also like to travel to Busan (South Korea) to meet my friends and Thailand to shop until I drop!

Allison Wong, Bank Officer

Why do you love to travel?

Travel is my passion and the one thing that will always make me happy. I love the feeling of waking up in new cities and the anticipation of new experiences whenever I travel.

Travelling makes Wong happy and she cherishes the memories made. - ALLISON WONGTravelling makes Wong happy and she cherishes the memories made. - ALLISON WONGWhat would be your main criteria when booking a holiday in a post-Covid-19 world?

I would prefer to plan my own free-and-easy itinerary instead of using group tours. Preference also will be given to smaller boutique hotels where SOPs are easier to enforce.

Once it is safe to do so, what are the destinations that you would like to visit in 2021?

Iceland has always been on my list of destinations to return to for another visit. It’s also one of the least crowded countries in the world, therefore making it the perfect destination for “social distance” travel.

The stunning landscape had captivated me the last time when I visited in winter and I hope to return to experience the terrain during a different season.

Japan is also another favourite country of mine and there is so much more to explore apart from popular destinations such as Tokyo and Kyoto.

Locally I would love to explore more of Sabah and Sarawak. There are many beautiful islands in Sabah, as well as some amazing national parks in Sarawak. We should also do our part to support local tourism.

Travel safe, and have fun!

Hasif Hamsyari, Travel Writer and Content Creator

Hasif wants to visit more local destinations in Malaysia once it's safe to do so. - HASIF HAMSYARIHasif wants to visit more local destinations in Malaysia once it's safe to do so. - HASIF HAMSYARIWhy do you love to travel?

I want to see the world and thus widen my perspective to appreciate life and be grateful for it.

What do you miss most about travelling?

When I travel, I will make sure to appreciate my surroundings, especially in a natural environment. It’s that zen moment that I am always looking forward to experiencing at different places.

I do miss seeing new sights, meeting new people and making new friends too.

Once it is safe to do so, what are the destinations that you would like to visit in 2021?

Some of my travel plans last year were cancelled due to the pandemic but if it is safe to do so, I would like to resume my plans and get back on track before starting new ones. Among the destinations are Bali, Indonesia for a waterfall hunting trip, Japan for the snow and Thailand for the Songkran festival.

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 1
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights
   

Next In Travel

Hotel keeps oceans clean and safe through eco-conscious projects
Malaysians will be paying more for hotels at these holiday destinations
Malaysian tour guide discovers Nepal's natural beauty and colourful stories
Malaysian visits the Korean Demilitarised Zone while studying in Seoul
More tourist hotspots in Penang and Langkawi
Would you dine with the fishes in a submarine?
8 things Malaysian tourists should not do while travelling abroad
Work from anywhere: Best workcation destinations around the world
5 epic train journeys in Malaysia you should get on track for
Wine cellar cycle tours in France offer visitors a memorable experience

Others Also Read