ASEAN50 to celebrate the rise of cruising in 2017

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The 10 Southeast Asian nations that are members of ASEAN are celebrating their 50th year in 2017 – and cruising will play a central role. A new campaign, to be announced in January, named VISIT ASEAN@50: Golden Celebration will showcase the region’s rich diversity and promote multi-destination travel.

It is expected to contribute to raising international tourism arrivals to the region from 109 million in 2015 to 121 million by 2017.

Fifty special travel experiences, ranging from two to 26 nights, have been created by leading tour operators and cruise lines in Southeast Asia to entice travellers to visit the region for the first time, as well as encourage repeat visitors.

Special cruise packages were created by cruise lines for VISIT ASEAN@50. These packages include exclusive promotions on sailings to discover destinations including Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Langkawi, Phuket, Bangkok, Yangon and many more.

One, for instance, is a 12-night cruise from Singapore to Yangon. Another is an 11-night Wellness and Nature trip to Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Ipoh, Penang and Langkawi.

The cruises lines participating include Royal Caribbean International, Star Cruises and Coral Expeditions. AirAsia is also supporting the campaign with an extensive awareness campaign, and will promote its ASEAN Pass, which allows guests to enjoy flights at fixed rates, to encourage travellers to explore the region. MasterCard will embark on its largest travel campaign to date for the ASEAN region.

Chairperson of the VISIT ASEAN@50 campaign, Mr Wardi bin Haji Mohammad Ali, said: “We worked closely with the national tourism organisations of ASEAN member states.

“Together, they selected 50 experiences that were cross-border, accessible to mainstream tourists, were culturally respectful and represented core themes that the NTOs were pleased to be associated with. All 10 ASEAN member states have been included.”

The member states are Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

The online brochure outlining the 50 VISIT ASEAN@50 packages can be found at ASEAN50.com.