Tourism Malaysia and Mastercard Join Forces to Boost Tourism

Tourism Malaysia Corporate and Mastercard have recently announced a strategic partnership with the ambitious goal of transforming the traveler experience and significantly boosting tourism and economic development in Malaysia. This collaboration comes in anticipation of Visit Malaysia (VM) 2026, and it encompasses various initiatives to position Malaysia as a key destination in the Asia Pacific region.

The Memorandum of Collaboration (MOC) exchange ceremony held on March 8, 2024, marked the official commencement of this groundbreaking partnership. As part of the agreement, Mastercard has been designated as Tourism Malaysia’s Exclusive Payment Partner, focusing particularly on enhancing the shopping segment, which has proven to be a substantial contributor to the country’s tourism sector.

𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐥𝐥𝐚𝐛𝐨𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐢𝐬 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐮𝐜𝐭𝐮𝐫𝐞𝐝 𝐚𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐧𝐝 𝐟𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐤𝐞𝐲 𝐚𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐬:

1. Harnessing Data Insights and Analytics: Mastercard’s regional Data & Services hub in Kuala Lumpur will play a pivotal role in providing actionable insights on traveler spending patterns, preferences, and needs. This aggregated and anonymized data will prove invaluable to travel and tourism authorities, operators, and businesses in optimizing their offerings.

2. Digitizing the Entire Traveler Journey: The partnership aims to co-create the Travel Malaysia app, a comprehensive solution for travelers. This app will serve as a one-stop platform offering personalized travel content and exclusive offers throughout the visitor journey, from itinerary planning to on-the-go location-based offers. The app is set to launch by 2025.

3. Developing World-Class Marketing Campaigns: Leveraging Mastercard’s global reach and marketing capabilities, both Tourism Malaysia and Mastercard will collaborate on creative and engaging marketing campaigns. The objective is to attract more potential travelers and achieve an incremental growth of 8 million arrivals by 2026.

4. Curating Exclusive Priceless Experiences and Specials: Mastercard, known for its signature Priceless program, plans to introduce this initiative to Malaysia. The program will offer unique experiences and exceptional offers for travelers, emphasizing Malaysia’s appeal as a one-stop destination for diverse experiences – Eat, Play, Shop, and Stay.

YB Khairul Firdaus Akbar Khan, Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts, and Culture, expressed enthusiasm for the partnership, emphasizing its potential long-term impact on the travel and tourism sector. He highlighted the commitment to utilizing technology to create a more seamless and innovative travel experience in Malaysia.

In 2023, Malaysia welcomed 20.14 million visitors, generating tourism receipts of RM71.3 billion. Shopping activities constituted a significant portion, contributing RM24.1 billion. With a targeted focus on the shopping segment, the collaboration with Mastercard aims to create distinctive and enriching experiences, positioning Malaysia as a premier global shopping destination, according to Mr. Manoharan Periasamy, Director General of Tourism Malaysia.

Mr. Safdar Khan, Division President, Southeast Asia, Mastercard, expressed the company’s excitement about partnering with Tourism Malaysia to revitalize and transform the tourism sector. The strategic collaboration aims to digitize Malaysia’s growing travel industry and position the country as a digital-first destination.

The collaboration aligns with Malaysia’s tourism goals for the current year, targeting 27.3 million international tourist arrivals and over RM102.7 billion in tourism receipts. Looking ahead to Visit Malaysia 2026, the country envisions welcoming 35.6 million visitors and generating target receipts of RM147.1 billion. These ambitious goals align with Malaysia’s Tourism Strategy 2020-2030, focusing on enhancing the country’s competitiveness as a top travel destination for international visitors.