LANGKAWI – The Langkawi Tourism Association (LTA) today exposed the presence of a third party which made bookings for hotel rooms to cash in on big events like the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace (Lima) exhibition.
Its chairman, Zainudin Kadir (pix), said the third party acted like a broker and they had money which enabled them to book a large number of rooms.
“These brokers pay cash to get many room which will then be offered at a higher price,” he told Bernama.
He said their doings had made difficult for registered tour agents which are registered with LTA to get hotel rooms and resulted in visitors to paying higher rate for the rooms.
“They are the ones who manipulated the situation that has affected our business, resulting in complaints that hotel room rate increased by three to four folds,’ he added.
He said their actions, if not addressed, could affect Langkawi’s image as an international tourist destination.
Zainudin said LTA planned to set up a an information counter at Pantai Cenang for tourists and visitors to lodge complaints on any tourism services that they were not happy with.
“If tourists feel they have been cheated over the price of services, they can lodge their complaints at the counter,” he added.
He said they could also do so at the LTA’s website, which would be launched by Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Ahmad Bashah Md Hanipah this Thursday (March 16).
Meanwhile, Langkawi branch head of Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Ministry, Shamnaziman Mohd Taulan, said the office would step up monitoring against profiteering to avoid quarters from taking advantage of Lima, to be held from March 21 to 25.