© 2015 David V. / R. Mena
SkyRide Travel & Tours (http://www.skyridetravelmyanmar.com/) is based in Myanmar and offers individually designed travel experiences all over the country, with packages designed for any taste. Travelers who are seeking adventures which test their physical limits, those who want to make a religious pilgrimage, or even the most discerning, demanding visitor who insists on the most luxurious accommodations available will find just what they are looking for at SkyRide. All of the staff are Burmese and are experts in the travel business. Additionally, the company has an office in the U.K. and can attend to clients in a variety of languages. SkyRide Travel & Tours has been selected to receive the BID Quality Crown Award for 2015.
Yangon: ancient history, colonial charm
Yangon, formerly known as Rangoon, is the sultry business center of Myanmar, with colonial architecture and a vibrant pulse. The city of 5 million people sits on a protected port in the south of the country, and has been an important trading center for centuries. Tourism has increased significantly in recent years, and Yangon has become a trendy destination for those seeking an exotic experience in southeast Asia.
Among the must see sights in Yangon is the Chaukhtatgyi Paya, a stunning 65 metre long reclining Buddha with a jewel encrusted crown and a milky white face, all hidden under a metal roof, so you must look for it. Naturally, it is surrounded by monasteries, a meditation centre and, more interestingly, a shrine to a holy man who can stop the rain.
Another Buddhist shrine is one you can hardly avoid seeing, the Shwedagon Paya, a stupa covered with 27 metric tons of gold leaf and thousands of precious stones. It is visible from practically anywhere in Yangon and is one of buddhism’s most sacred shrines. Its history goes back 2600 years to the time of the Buddha himself, when two brothers who’d met Siddhartha brought eight of his hairs back to Yangon to be enshrined on the site. The building itself has been heavily damaged and rebuilt a number of times, and its current configuration is the result of extensive renovations done after a 1970 earthquake. It’s guarded by traditional Burmese lion statues called chinthes, 9 metres tall and imposing.
For an immersive experience in local culture it would be hard to beat the Bogyoke Aung San market, with over 2000 shops offering handicrafts, clothes, antiques, and jewellery. The foreign tourist is sure to find just the right gift or souvenir. Or you might try the Inle Lake floating market, where local produce and other goods are sold from small boats.
SkyRide Offers Customized Tours to Yangon and Beyond
The key aspect of SkyRide’s approach to customer service is customization, where the tour operator listens carefully to the client and asks the right questions in order to craft a vacation that will be memorable, safe, and within budget. Understanding clients’ needs takes time, but it is vital to making the experience the best it can be.
The company specializes in catering to the needs of the international traveller. Myanmar is full of natural beauty, ancient historical sites and exotic culture and the company strives to make the tour full of local color and experiences that cannot be had anywhere else. © 2015 David V. / R. Mena
The BID committee was particularly impressed by the complete range of services offered by the company, showing an unusual degree of sensitivity to customer service and client satisfaction. The range of experiences available is remarkable, from cultural tours, Buddhist tours, Eco tours, and adventure tours to leisure beach tours, honeymoon and anniversary tours, trekking tours, river cruise tours, golf tours, diving tours, festival tours and special interest tours. The staff also offers to custom design vacations which do not appear in their offerings.
Myanmar is a country that is little understood by many western tourists, and so the company places a whole host of useful information on its website. In addition to the usual offerings of hotels ranging from budget to luxury, rental car options and monument choices, the website contains information on obtaining a visa, travel do’s and don’ts, safety tips, facts about Myanmar, a comprehensive list of festivals, weather information, embassy addresses, and other useful information sure to be of help to even seasoned travellers. Other practical information about currency, customs, dress and even behaviour around Buddhist monks was impressive and thorough. The BID committee looks at a lot of travel websites, and this is one of the most complete they had ever seen. Here is an example that the committee thought was particularly useful:
“Eat moderately for the first few days. Allow your system to get used to the changes. Be cautious with local milk products like cheese, cream and ice-cream. It is also advisable to eat only cooked vegetables and avoid green salads. We recommend you carry with you a small supply of basic health care medication such as travel sickness tablets, anti-diarrhoea tablets, antacids for indigestion, insect repellent, sun creams and selected antibiotics after discussion with your doctor. Some of these items may be difficult to find in Myanmar and the security provided by brands one is used to is reassuring. We strongly recommend that all travellers are properly insured for the holiday. While taking insurance, please check that it includes repatriation costs.”
Because of its commitment to quality, and in particular because of the unusually thorough and thoughtful presentation of its website, SkyRide Travel & Tours has been selected to receive the BID Quality Crown Award for 2015 at the convention in London.
ABOUT BID AND THE INTERNATIONAL QUALITY CROWN AWARD:
BID is a private and independent organization founded in 1984, whose primary activity is business communication orientated towards quality, excellence and innovation in management. A leader in the broadcasting of Quality Culture, BID recognizes those companies and organizations which lead the most important activities in the business world, and is considered the founding organization in the broadcasting of the Culture of Quality, Excellence and Innovation in 179 countries. The trophy symbolizes a pledge to the principles of Quality Culture. The QC100 Total Quality Management Model, together with the Quality Mix program, media coverage of the convention and its impact on the community and business sector, create an unmatched platform for continuous improvement within the organization and awareness of the achievements of the company at an international level. Awards are given only to those who are committed to improving their Quality Culture based on the principles of the QC100 Total Quality Management Model. Candidates are proposed by the leaders of previously awarded companies who they consider worthy of the award. Especially meritorious candidates may also be nominated. The International BID Quality Award Selection Committee then chooses the winning companies who will receive the award in New York, Paris, Geneva, Frankfurt, Madrid and London.