First Tourism Hospitality, Technology Confab in Sarawak
The first-ever conference on travel technology and hospitality automation will be held here in November this year. Initiated and organised by UCSI Communications Sdn Bhd (UCSI Communications), the Asia Pacific Tourism Hospitality and Technology Conference (Apthat) 2013, will be held on Nov 21 and 22 at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK).
Among the objectives of the conference are to prepare the travel and tourism industrialists to be resilient in the competitive market that is technology driven as well as to introduce them to the latest gadgets. The conference also aims at identifying opportunities that are propelled by innovations.
“This is a home-grown made in Sarawak Malaysian conference. In this conference, we are going more into innovation and technology. We feel that these two topics are very important in today’s travel trends because technology has evolved to be part of the tourism and hospitality industry,” said UCSI Communications managing director Gracie Geikie at a press conference yesterday.
The conference will include workshops, master classes, buyer-seller sessions, hotel inspections and exhibitions. Six papers will be presented. “It will be a different style of conference as there will be a lot of fun. The conference will touch on several areas especially on Professional Conference Organiser (PCO). We also have a section on association matters where we feel that there is a need to educate the audience about association and be part of an association. “We have exhibitor booths and a very small version of buyer-seller session where delegates can meet with the members of the industries. As for master classes, we will be covering the Blue Ocean Strategy and the role of PCO,” she explained.
Gracie said the director-general of Tourism Malaysia Dato Mirza Mohammad Tayed had consented to deliver the keynote address while a letter of invitation had been sent out to the Tourism Minister who will be the guest-of-honour. Among the confirmed speakers are Prof Dr Ross Dowling and Selina Power from Australia, Dr Madahmohan Roa, E M Najeeb, both from India and Rohizam Md Yusoff from Malaysia.
Apart from gathering the industry experts and players from within the Asia Pacific region, UCSI Communications also hopes the event could further enhance the state’s effort in making Sarawak a MICE (meeting, incentive, conference and exhibitions) destination.
UCSI Communications is hoping to attract some 300 participants. Early bird special discount for the delegate fee is ongoing until April 30 and the price per delegate from May 1 onwards will be RM1,380 (US$460). Corporate discount is also available whereby corporate delegates will just have to pay the price of five delegates for six delegates. The delegate fee is inclusive of two days of conference, two pre-selected workshops and two buyer- seller sessions (first come, first served basis), four tea breaks, two luncheons, two pre-dinner networking cocktail receptions and a closing dinner party.
Registered delegates who intend to attend the master class will have to pay RM180 per person and each class is limited to 80 people, on a first come, first served basis. There will also be exhibition booths available for tours, travel related, travel accessories, hoteliers at RM1,700 (US$590) per booth for two full days. The booth includes 3m x 3m shell scheme, a table, two chairs, a dustbin, a socket/plug point and fascia. Each booth is entitled to a conference delegate pass with full entitlement.