MVA supports Busan-Saipan flights with tour

Participants of the Marianas Busan familiarization tour inspect Aqua Resort Club Saipan on Oct. 28, 2016, as part of their tour of nine hotels and other tourist facilities and attractions in the Northern Mariana Islands. The group was accompanied by sales director Kinu Kim of the Marianas Visitors Authority’s Korea Office, far left. (MVA)

To continue support of direct flights from Busan, Korea to Saipan launched by Asiana Airlines in October 2011, the Marianas Visitors Authority recently conducted a Marianas-Busan familiarization tour with six key travel agents.

The tour was held on Oct. 26-30, 2016, in cooperation with Asiana Airlines, Hyatt Regency Saipan, and Kensington Hotel Saipan and provided the participants with an in-depth education about the Northern Marianas. Participating agencies were Hana Tour, Mode Tour, YB Tour, Lotte Tour, Lotte JTB, and Naeil Tour, which have all blocked seats on the Busan-Saipan flights to sell.

“Flight service from new cities in any country is often difficult to start, and so careful attention must be paid to keeping the demand high for the destination so that those flights remain in service,” said MVA managing director Christopher A. Concepcion. “Bringing in key travel agents who sell the destination on [familiarization] tours allows them to experience the destination for themselves, and this better equips them to boost sale products and sell the destination. FAM tours, combined with all the other marketing and promotion undertaken by our office in Korea and a strong national economy, are both important parts of our strong arrival numbers from Korea at this time.”

Staying at Hyatt Regency Saipan and Kensington Hotel Saipan two nights each, the participants inspected nine major hotel partners in the Northern Marianas: Coral Ocean Golf Resort, PIC Saipan, Kanoa Resort Saipan, Saipan World Resort, Fiesta Resort & Spa Saipan, Aqua Resort Club Saipan, Kensington Hotel Saipan, and Lao Lao Bay Golf & Resort. Participants also experienced optional tours like Let’s Go Tour’s off-road buggy tour and Managaha, as well as Country House Restaurant, Bubba Gump, T Galleria, Best Sunshine Live, Garapan Street Market, and the historic and scenic sites of Marpi.

Jeju Air is also scheduled to launch regular flight service launch from Busan beginning on Dec. 15, 2016. (MVA)