Monday, December 07, 2009

Tour operators lauded proposed alternative route to Ranau

KOTA KINABALU: Tour operators or travel agents in Sabah always undertake contingencies when it comes to transporting tourists along landslide prone highways – giving advanced notice for them to expect the unexpected.

In a random survey carried out by New Sabah Times, some inbound and outbound tour operators agreed that occurrence of landslides in landslide prone areas, especially at popular tourist spots like the National Park and Poring Hot Spring have somehow been minimized as compared to the past.

However, most of the agents lauded the government’s proposal to construct an alternative route from Telipok near here via Kiulu, Randagong and Ranau under the 10th Malaysia Plan.

“Since the proposed route is expected to be completed in four years time, we will maintain our contingency plans as from now, always trying our best to brief our guests in advance to avoid them or us having to fork out extra cash when it comes to flight cancellation fees if they are stranded due to landslides or other incidents that are beyond our control,” said, Welter Lainor, Sales Manager of Discovery Tours (Sab) Sdn Bhd.

Regarding the recent landslide on Dec 1 at KM65 along the Kota Kinabalu-Ranau Highway, where thousands including tour buses carrying tourists were held up for hours, he commended the Public Works Department’s prompt action to ease traffic flow by opening-up an alternative route.

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