Good move to boost tourism

Muhammad Bakhtiar is delighted to have a butterfly perch on his fingers at Entopia in Teluk Bahang, Penang. With him are Goh (blue T-shirt) and state Tourism and Culture Ministry director Jonathan Freddy Bagang.

TOURISM players have to adhere to strict criteria before they are awarded the Malaysia Tourism Quality Assurance 2019 (MyTQA) certificate which recognises the outstanding services to local and foreign tourists.

Deputy Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Muhammad Bakhtiar Wan Chik said the seven main criteria were information, initial impressions, attraction, facilities, staff, safety and sustainable practices.

“There are multiple steps, there will be a MyTQA team to audit the place and the panel will evaluate if the certificate should be awarded.

“The certificate is valid for three years and during that period, random checks will be conducted.

“If the standard drops the certificate can be withdrawn,” he said after handing over certificates to five MyTQA 2019 recipients at Entopia by Penang Butterfly Farm in Teluk Bahang recently.

Muhammad Bakhtiar said the objective of the award was for tourism players to come up with at least some standard for their attraction.

“We have been getting a lot of complaints about our products, the lack of facilities or conditions of our toilets as well as safety problems.

“MyTQA is a form of recognition for tourism industry players who place importance on the quality of their services and put the needs of their visitors first.

“The benefits from the certification is that it will be listed in the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture (MOTAC) and Tourism Malaysia website.

“There will also be opportunities to participate in foreign trade missions organised by Tourism Malaysia, to participate in quality services training courses by MOTAC and weightage to the Tourism Fund,” he said.

Entopia chairman and founder David Goh said it was great to win the award as the standards were higher.

“This is a good start to upgrade the minimum quality and see better grades of tourist attractions.

“To us, we put importance towards education, in relation to conservation of nature.

“Our message is not only to the locals but also to visitors from all over the world, which is to care for nature,” he said.

The other four recipients of the certificate were The Top@Komtar, My Crystal Museum, Dark Mansion 3D Glow in the dark Museum and Queensbay Mall.

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