Q & A with Mr. Agung Yoga Asmoro, CEO & Director of Lintang Buana Tourism Services, with main office based in Surabaya, East Java, Indonesia. "An environmentally, socially, and culturally responsible tour company." They offer a wide variety of group and private tour itineraries to many destinations throughout the country of Indonesia, especially within the islands of Java, Bali, and Sumatra. URL: www.lintangbuanatours.com
WHAT DO YOUR CUSTOMERS SAY THEY LIKE BEST ABOUT YOUR COMPANY AND TOURS?
They like our quick response to their inquiries. Customers also like how we are able to be flexible and customize their itinerary to accommodate their needs and preferences.
HOW IS YOUR COMPANY DIFFERENT THAN OTHERS TOUR SERVICES IN INDONESIA?
We try to be more than a business, we value the opportunity to be an agent of change. In other words, we believe that we can serve as a “real” ambassador on behalf of our country. We treat our customers very well and maintain excellent communication with them before, during, and even after their time spent with us. We have an important responsibility to educate our guests about Indonesia and to make sure they have an authentic and positive experience they can take home and remember for years to come.
Newcomers are surprised that Indonesia is such a big country in terms of geography and so diverse, too. Yet we are able to unite as one country. They are also surprised that what they experience in Indonesia may be very different than the perceptions they had from the media before coming here. They also discover that they like Indonesian food!
For diving activities, we partner with registered diving operators around Indonesia. Some guests come ready with a PADI certificate. If they do not have the certificate, they can enroll in a PADI class at the nearest location here to get certified. That’s a requirement prior joining any diving activities. The dive operators provide all the diving and snorkel gear for rent at their locations.
HOW DO YOU SEE ECOTOURISM IN INDONESIA GROWING IN THE FUTURE?
I believe that ecotourism in Indonesia will be bigger in the future.
Government officials and other stakeholders have stated their intention to make ecotourism a priority within overall tourism development. They have created new regulations on both the national and local levels and authorized an ecotourism committee to coordinate between the Ministries of Tourism, Maritime, and Forestry. As a result, tourism companies here are becoming more aware of environmental issues and are improving their operations to comply with the new regulations.
Another factor is that tourism as an academic subject can be studied by students at our universities.
And at the local level, I see Indonesian people being enthusiastic supporters of their local ecotourism DMOs (Destination Management Organizations).
WHAT HAS LINTANG BUANA TOURISM SERVICES DONE RECENTLY TO IMPROVE YOUR COMMITMENT TO RESPONSIBLE TRAVEL?
We have identified our core values and implemented them as policies under several categories. You can read about them in the Tourism section on our website. The categories are: Sustainable Development, Social Responsibility, Economic Responsibility, and Governance & Ethical Responsibility.
In my opinion, travelers can be change agents too. They can make a positive impression directly to the Indonesian people by making certain choices.
For example, they can use local public transportation or hire a locally owned small transport company. They can stay at small-scale locally-owned lodges and also consider homestays where that is a possibility. Eat at local restaurants. All these things bring revenue into the local communities. Also be respectful of the local norms and traditions.
YOUR COMPANY IS A MEMBER OF TIES (THE INTERNATIONAL ECOTOURISM SOCIETY). WHAT BENEFITS DO YOU FIND MOST REWARDING FROM BEING A PART OF THIS ORGANIZATION?
Internally, it has helped us create a great positive value about Ecotourism. It has helped us to be a better organization. Externally, it helps when more guests who share that same value with respect to Ecotourism choose us instead of the mass tour companies.
IN SUMMARY, WHY SHOULD PEOPLE VISIT INDONESIA, AND WHY SHOULD THEY CHOOSE “LINTANG BUANA TRAVEL SERVICES?”
The Prophet Muhammad once said 'Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you have travelled.'
Indonesia is made up of over 17,000 islands and is the largest archipelago in the world, stretching 3,200 miles from east to west and straddles the equator between the Australian and Asian Continents. That makes us very unique and worth visiting.
Plus we have many rich traditional cultures to offer, many ancient temples across many of the islands, and breathtaking natural beauty. Once people come here they want to come back again.
As for choosing our company, Lintang Buana Tourism Services is 100% Indonesian owned, and it is our pleasure to give you the most authentic experience of Indonesia.
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