Brunei welcomes more than 100 Korean visitors, sees increased room reservation rates

More than 100 South Korean tourists arrived in Brunei recently, marking the largest number of visitors from the republic entering the country since the reopening of air travel.

General Manager of Antara Travel & Tours Nur Rabia’tul Haji Sulaiman said that tourists from South Korea admire the sultanate’s beauty of nature and peaceful atmosphere of Brunei which is hard to find in other countries including their own country.

In an interview with The Bruneian, two tourists from Seoul shared that it was their first time in Brunei and are excited for the adventures that await them.

Courtesy photos from Tourism Department

“We went to Kota Kinabalu two weeks ago and found that Brunei was very nearby and we were curious as we know nothing about the country,” said 31-year-old Dahee Um.

On her part, Eunjoo Park shared that the two friends decided to buy tickets first and searched Brunei, which gave results of the Mangrove forest as well The Empire Hotel, their choice of stay.

For Chaeyeon Kim, a student at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) studying Bachelor of Science who is currently on a gap year, decided to bring her mother on the sight-seeing trip as well.

Image: Nurhana Diah

“I enjoy studying here as the people are so kind and welcoming and the natural scenery in Brunei is so beautiful so I am excited to be visiting as a tourist with my mother,” said the 22-year-old.

According to Nur Rabia’tul, two more chartered flights are expected to arrive by end of November.

The company is also targeting more markets such as Japan and the People’s Republic of China to visit in the future.

Positive increase

Image: Nurhana Diah

Additionally, the tourism sector in Brunei is beginning to show an increase in the number of international tourists since the lifting of travel restrictions and cross-border activities are allowed starting August 2022.

From August to September 2022, room reservation rates by international tourists in the 15 largest hotels in the country have increased from 8,271 reservations to 12,406 reservations making an increase of 50 per cent.

Hotels, tourist accommodations and travel agencies have been accepting bookings and visits by not only locals but international tourists, giving an indication that the tourism industry is recovering to pre-pandemic levels.

Image: Nurhana Diah

According to the Acting Chief Executive Officer of Royal Brunei Airlines (RB) Captain Sabirin Hj Abd Hamid, the rate of international tourists is expected to continue to grow with increased flight frequency as well as the resumption of flights to this country in the next few months.

He also shared that although the state of the tourism industry is still not fully stable, he expects a significant increase with the opening of borders in North Asia.

Furthermore, he highlighted the crucial role of RB in supporting the Tourism and Development Department in increasing the number of international tourist arrivals.

“As the national carrier for Brunei, supporting Brunei Tourism’s annual target is among RB’s top commitments. The increase of RB’s flight frequencies and resumptions of flights in the coming months will further boost the number of travelers coming into Brunei. Of course, the industry as we know it, is still very fluid, we anticipate a significant increase of travelers once North Asia borders open,” said the acting ceo.

Meanwhile, some travel agencies are no longer willing to accept reservations due to the sudden increase in demand, especially at the end of the year due to the school holiday season in December.


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