Cruising for the perfect getaway

Cheong (right) and Wen at the press conference to announce Royal Caribbean as the official cruise partner for the upcoming MATTA Fair.

FANCY a holiday where you can sit back and relax, and not worry about things? Going on a cruise may just be the perfect vacation for you.

Royal Caribbean International (RCI) is offering exclusive cruise packages at the upcoming Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) Fair.

Royal Caribbean Cruises (Asia) Pte Ltd sales head (Asia Pacific) Josh Wen said this was the fifth year RCI has come on board as the official cruise partner for the fair from March 15 to 17 at Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), Kuala Lumpur.

“Cruises are one of the highest-growing vacation options in Asia, which is evident as the company does better every year with a double digit growth at the fair. We are confident that the take-up rate will be better this round,” he said.

Wen urged visitors to look out for the exciting “Buy 1 Get 1 Off” promotion offered at their booths.

“The highlights of the cruise deals are the Voyager of the Seas, Spectrum of the Seas and Quantum of the Seas cruise lines,” he said.

Attractions onboard the 15-deck high Voyager of the Seas include the Royal Promenade, featuring duty-free boutiques, full-sized sports court with the Flowrider surf simulator, rock-climbing wall and mini-golf, ice-skating rink and 3D movies.

Visitors can also indulge in a variety of complimentary dining options at the Main Dining Room, Windjammer Cafe buffet restaurant and 24-hour Cafe Promenade.

There are also specialty restaurants such as Chops Grille Steakhouse, Giovanni’s Table, Izumi for Asian cuisine and Johnny Rockets.

The itineraries of the 4,200-guest ship sailing from Singapore feature a three-night Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang) and Bintan Cruise from April 30 to June 21, and a four-night Penang and Phuket cruise from May 6 to June 17.

Offering three options from Singapore upon arrival in Asia for the first time, Spectrum of the Seas is RCI’s latest addition to launch next month.

The first of the Quantum Ultra class can carry more than 5,600 guests and comes with the SkyPad VR bungee trampoline attraction, two-level Ultimate Family Suite with an in-room slide, North Star elevated glass

capsule that takes riders 91.5m above sea level for a breath-taking view, skydive and surf stimulators and the SeaPlex indoor active space that features bumper cars and roller-skating.

Itineraries available are the three-night cruise to Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang on May 18); a four-night cruise to Penang on May 21; and a nine-night one-way cruise from Singapore to Shanghai, calling at Ho Chi Minh City, Nha Trang and Hong Kong (with an overnight stay) on May 25.

Quantum of the Seas is set to return to South-East Asia for six months, offering 30 trips from November to April next year.

Refreshed and upgraded, the ship, which can carry 4,905 guests, also features the North Star, skydiving simulator, Seaplex and the Two70 transformative venue with high-tech entertainment.

Visitors can check out the exciting packages which include four- and five-night cruises to Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang) and Penang or Phuket, a seven-night cruise to Kuala Lumpur (Port Klang) and Penang or Phuket (with an overnight) and a seven-night cruise to Bangkok (Laem Chabang) (with an overnight) and HoChi Minh City.

MATTA exco member for cruises Kenny Cheong is confident cruise packages will be the most sellable in this upcoming fair.

“Although cruising is still fairly new in Malaysia, it is fast gaining popularity.

“With a budget of more than RM1,000, you get all-inclusive packages so you can enjoy without worrying about the extra cost on hotels, food and entertainment,” he said.

Cheong added that the fair expected an increase of up to 10% in visitor turnout from 110,000 visitors in March last year, and targets about RM230,000 in sales transactions.

The Royal Caribbean booths will be located at Hall 3.

MATTA Fair March 2019 is open from 10am to 9pm. Admission is RM4 per person and free for children aged below 12.

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