TUI Group, an international travel operator with headquarters in Hannover, Germany, is making its setting up camp in Malaysia, with a “Fly & Cruise” programme. The Anglo-German travel operator, formed more than 40 years ago, owns and operates travel agencies, hotels, airlines, cruise ships, and retail stores in 180 destinations around the world.
The programme is expected to increase European tourist arrivals in Malaysia and to promote cruise holidays. It will run from Dec 20 this year to March 29 next year, offering direct flights to Langkawi. Passengers will arrive in Langkawi via fortnightly flights from three airports in Britain: Gatwick, Manchester and Birmingham.
With Langkawi as the homeport for TUI Group’s ship, passengers will spend at least one night on the island before going on a 14-day cruise which includes destinations like Penang, Port Klang and Melaka in Malaysia, as well as to Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. The total capacity is expected to be around 7,200 passengers in its first year of operation.
TUI Group was also named the Best Foreign Tour Operator at the recent 20th Malaysia Tourism Awards.
All (TUI Group’s) three cruise companies – TUI Cruises, Hapag-Llyoid Cruises, and Britain-based Marella Cruises – have included Malaysia in their itineraries. With three Malaysian ports of call, including one homeport (Langkawi, Port Klang, and Penang), the TUI Group’s cruise companies are expected to boost European tourist arrivals in the nation.