Borneo Eco Tours (BET) has been pioneering ecotourism since 1991 and took home the award for Best Tour Operator in Responsible Tourism at last night’s MATTA Awards 2019 Gala Dinner held at Hilton Kuala Lumpur.
Borneo Eco Tours believes that being a tour operator goes beyond than just doing annual Corporate Social Responsibility programs. It is what the company strives for in its daily operations and conducts. Besides taking care of the environment, BET also believes that it is about educating and empowering our communities.
One of the reasons that makes Borneo Eco Tours a “Responsible Tourism” tour operator is the fact that it also owns and operates the Sukau Rainforest Lodge (SRL), a multi-award winning ecolodge and Charter Member of the National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World since 2015. The lodge had just recently launched its Borneo Villa accommodation on 28 June 2019, and the event was officiated by Sabah Deputy Chief Minister cum Sabah Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment.
Other than that, BET also has an established non-profit division BEST Society that carries out community and environmental projects around Sabah. Whenever travellers choose to travel with BET and stay at SRL, they will also help to fund the community and social projects in Malaysian Borneo carried out by BEST Society. An ongoing effort by BET and overseen by BEST Society is Kiulu Farmstay, a community-based tourism project developed in Kiulu Valley. It is a product of BET which aims to transform it into an integrated ecotourism destination that includes homestays, farmstays and outdoor adventure activities such as quad biking, camping, river fishing, hiking, team building and many more.
BET uses its knowledge and expertise in tourism to transfer skills and knowledge to the community of Kiulu who are involved in the Kiulu Farmstay project. Besides this, BET is also helping to promote and sell the tourism products at Kiulu, including the local homestays there through its expertise in digital marketing and social media. BET provides a bigger platform for the local community to reach out to a wider audience and target market. Other than that, it is through BET that new tourism products have been developed in Kiulu, such as the ecolodge called the Fig Tree at Kiulu Farmstay, Borneo Quad Biking, Kiulu Farmstay Obstacle Course and others.
The MATTA Awards Night 2019 is an award programme organised by Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) exclusively for MATTA Members. The Awards are presented to recognise MATTA Members’ achievement in the highest standards of service delivery for Malaysian tourism industry. A total of 13 awards as a benchmark of excellence for finalists and winners based on specific categories were given out during the MATTA Awards Gala Dinner last night. Some of these awards also include the Best Tour Operator (Inbound), Best Tour (Outbound), Best Tour Operator (Domestic), Best Tour Operator (MICE), Best Travel Agency (Start-up) and MATTA Tourism Icon Award just to name a few.