A THOUSAND HOTEL ROOM BOOKINGS IN AN HOUR?
“Not Quite, Hotels Did Not Experience Surge in Bookings as Claimed”
Wisma MAH, Ampang (8 June 2020) – The Chief Executive Officer of Langkawi Tourism Association (LTA), Zainudin Kadir yesterday claimed that the hotels in Langkawi received a thousand room bookings just between a short period of 4.00pm to 4.45pm immediately after the announcement by the Prime Minister, allowing domestic tourism from 10 June 2020 onwards under the Recovery Movement Control Order (RMCO).
The news stunned not only the public and tourism agencies, but hoteliers themselves whom had since then revealed that it was falsely reported.
While the Langkawi Tourism Association claims to represent tourism stakeholders of the popular island, little is known of its membership and source of data reported. A quick search on the internet revealed a defunct webpage offering investment & stock exchange, banking and business consulting services among others. Similarly, its Facebook page is also inactive.
Members of the media, tourism agencies and industry stakeholders turned to the Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) to reconfirm the news, with best intentions to spread the encouraging trend.
MAH Kedah & Perlis Chairman, Mr Eugene Dass along with member hotels from Langkawi however clarified that as much as the industry would love to see such surge in hotel bookings, the one thousand hotel bookings did not take place. Instead, the said news caused much anxiety and concerns among hoteliers and their employees, as to how such flawed information could spread through reputable news agencies like Astro Awani.
“Recovery is the responsibility of the community and not just the industry, and we will overcome this phase together with facts and data to support economic growth,” said En Halim Merican, the Acting President of MAH. Established in 1974, MAH represents over a thousand hotel members in Malaysia spread across thirteen chapters (states) and had always been the credible source for industry analytics and references.