Contest to boost homestay services

For tourists: Law and Harun showing pamphlets on homestay services after the press conference.

TEN homestay villages in Penang, which were registered with the Tourism and Culture Ministry, stand a chance to win attractive cash prizes as well as trophies and certificates at the state’s first homestay competition this year.

State Tourism Development Committee chairman Danny Law Heng Kiang said the competition was aimed at encouraging homestay operators to offer the best facilities and services to the visitors.

The 10 homestay villages are Teluk Bahang, Sungai Semilang, Jalan Bharu, Pulau Betong, Sungai Chenaam, Sungai Setar, Sungai Duri, Mengkuang Titi, Pulau Aman and Kota Aur.

“The panel of judges consists of state Speaker Datuk Law Choo Kiang, Permatang Pasir assemblyman Datuk Mohd Salleh Man, former Penang Speaker Datuk Abdul Halim Hussain, representatives from the Tourism Malaysia and the Tourism and Culture Ministry.

“They will be evaluating the homestays from March 1 to March 31.

“The criteria are the annual income of the village (for 2014), the number of visitors (for 2014), cleanliness, decoration and services,” Law told a press conference at his office in Komtar recently.

Law said most hotels in Penang were fully booked during school holidays and the festive season.

“However, some of the visitors choose the homestay experience.

“We hope homestay operators and the parties involved can be committed and provide the best homestay services to the tourists,” he said.

The first prize winner will take home RM10,000 cash, trophy and certificate.

The second prize winner will be presented with RM5,000, a trophy and certificate, and the third prize winner will get RM3,000, a trophy and certificate.

Also present were Mohd Salleh, Deputy State Secretary (development) Datuk Abu Jamal Nordin and Tourism Malaysia Penang director Harun Pilus.

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