Referring to the data from the Central Statistics Agency (BPS), in 2019 the number of foreign tourists visiting from China reached 2.07 million or 12.86% of the total realization of foreign tourists visiting 16.11 million. That number is the second-highest after Malaysia which reached 2.98 million visits or 18.51% of the total realization of foreign tourists visiting. Meanwhile, the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy (Kemenparekraf) is targeting the number of foreign tourists to reach 17 million this year. This figure is lower than last year’s target of 18 million visits. While the target of foreign exchange earnings from the tourism sector this year is the US $ 21 billion. This figure is greater than the US $ 1 billion from the realization of 2019 which amounted to the US $ 20 billion or Rp 275 trillion.
Didien revealed, European tourists usually take a vacation in the summer (summer) which takes place in April-September and winter (winter). “Seeing this, the government must act quickly by starting to intensify the approach to the tour operator (TO) there to make a destination switching from China to Indonesia. The approach is taken to the TO and not directly to the tourists because they usually use the services of TO while on vacation, “said Didien.
He continued, the government must also be brave to provide various incentives to further attract their interest in visiting Indonesia, both related to airlines, hotels, and other accommodations at special prices. “For this summer, the government must immediately assign VITO or Visit Indonesia Tourism Officer in Europe and Indonesian travel agents (TA) who have connected partners with Europe to intensify promotions and lobby with TO there,” said Didien. Meanwhile, to attract European tourists who will take a vacation in the winter, according to Didien, the government can optimize the promotion at The Internationale Tourismus Börse (ITB) exhibition in Messe, Berlin, Germany. The largest tourism exhibition in the world will take place on March 4-8, 2020. “If this can be run, it can at least reduce potential losses by up to 50 percent,” Didien said.
Institute for Development of Economics and Finance (Indef) researcher Mirah Midadan said, the type of government cooperation with travel agents or online platforms that sell various kinds of transportation tickets to hotel coupons, must be done. “Government intervention is certainly needed in these circumstances. If not, the tourism sector will ‘drought’, he said. He added, the government could also control the price of plane tickets from now on with certain schemes. “If I look at the price of plane tickets at the moment, I think this is still a burden for the public if they have to choose the mode of air transportation,” he said.
This news has been published in the Indonesian version of Investor Daily and the investor.id page on February, 16th 2020.