Tourism Breaking News

ICRA expects improved yields in Indian aviation in 2018

Healthy passenger load factors (PLFs) supported by a decline in competitive intensity due to moderation in capacity addition and suspension of operations of three regional airlines has augured well for the industry profitability. This coupled with a gradual improvement in the core growth drivers like economic environment, tourism demand and regulatory support and a strong demand during the peak season is expected to support the industry profitability during H2 FY2018. Improved tourism demand, policy measures like the National Civil Aviation Policy and the Regional Connectivity Scheme and start of economic revival are the key positives for the industry. However, inadequate aviation infrastructure, which has constrained the performance of airlines, remains a bottleneck. According to Kinjal Shah, Assistant Vice President & Co-Head – Corporate Sector Ratings, ICRA, “The industry has done well to mitigate the impact of 8.7 per cent YOY increase in ATF prices during H1 FY2018. The increased ability of the airlines to pass on the costs to the customers due to reduced competitive intensity has resulted in an increase in the revenue per available seat kilometer (RASK)-cost per available seat kilometer (CASK) spread for the airlines, and the financial performance of most of the airlines improved during the current year.”

Read More »

Hilton launches Hilton Garden Inn in Lucknow

Hilton has announced the opening of Hilton Garden Inn Lucknow, the first Hilton Garden Inn and second Hilton property in Uttar Pradesh, following the opening of DoubleTree by Hilton Agra. “India is an important growth market for Hilton Garden Inn and we are delighted to expand our portfolio by opening our fourth hotel in the country. We remain committed to giving our guests exceptional experiences while staying true to our brand promise to make the guests’ stay better,” said John Greenleaf, Global Head, Hilton Garden Inn. Hilton Garden Inn Lucknow boasts 125 contemporary guestrooms, including four junior and executive suites. The hotel provides an abundance of amenities to elevate guests’ stay experience, including bedding with hypoallergenic pillows, 43-inch LCD TV and a spacious workstation with Herman Miller ergonomic chair. Complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi access is available throughout the hotel and guests may choose to stay connected and productive at 24-hour business center, which offers complimentary printing facilities.    

Read More »

Indonesia teams up with MakeMyTrip to promote tourism

In an aim to tap more potentialities from the Indian tourism market, the Indonesian government held a two-day tourism promotion event at Ambience Mall, Delhi from December 9-10, in partnership with MakeMyTrip. “India is part of the ultimate tourism markets for Indonesia. Not only Bali, we would also promote other destinations across Indonesia for potential Indian tourists throughout the event,” said I Gde Pitana Pitana, Deputy Minister for International Marketing Development at the Ministry of Tourism, Indonesia. According to Pitana, the arrival figures of Indian tourists to Indonesia have grown significantly to 357,522 in the first nine months of this year, or 31.07 per cent higher than the figure in the same period of last year. The event was expected to help the Indonesian government to achieve its target of 456,000 Indian tourists this year, Pitana added. Source: Xinhua

Read More »

ISO certification for Ashok Institute of Hospitality & Tourism Management

Ashok Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management (AIH&TM), the Human Resource Development division under India Tourism Development Corporation (ITDC), has been certified with ISO 9001:2015 certification for imparting quality education in hospitality and tourism management. To ensure that various activities undertaken by the institute are standardised with latest quality policy Ashok Institute of Hospitality and Tourism Management (AIH&TM) has now upgraded to ISO 9001:2015 Certification. Besides conducting short duration customised training programmes for hotels and restaurants, AIH&TM has offered hospitality-related training consultancy for Ministry of Tourism, President House, Prime Minister’s House, State Bhawans, Indian Foreign Services, Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board, public sector organisations and State Tourism departments. Commenting on the certification, Piyush Tiwari, Director Commercial & Marketing, ITDC, said, “ITDC stands for change and development in tourism and hospitality and assist in building a better nation. Also, we ensure that we are parallel to the advancements in terms of quality and technology. The ISO 9001:2015 certification confirms our capability to deliver knowledge and training in the best possible way to help build a skilled India.”  

Read More »

Globus & Cosmos conducts interactive sessions with tour director

The Globus Family of Brands recently conducted an interactive session in the format of a talk show with one of its most senior tour directors, Benjamin Deham. Titled ‘Banter with Big Ben’, the event featured the Belgian tour director who spoke about what happens behind the scenes during every tour. Abira Sinha, Regional Sales Manager – India, Globus Family of Brands (India), explains, “We took this show to five cities across India that included Mumbai, New Delhi, Chennai, Bengaluru and Kolkata. The idea was to bring to the travel trade what their clients experience on these tours. Usually, when they come back they talk about the tour director who can make a significant difference to the quality of the tour. He can really make or break it.” While in India, Benjamin spoke about how the tour is organised, how he deals with different challenges while on tour and how he overcomes them to give the best experience to guests. Sinha adds, “One of the biggest factors for clients coming back is the tour director. Benjamin had all these funny stories and anecdotes that he narrated to our travel partners. It was learning with fun instead of just seeing a presentation.”

Read More »

Unfortunate move to slash basic agents’ commission: Rajan Sehgal

Calling it an unfortunate decision, Rajan Sehgal, Member—Managing Committee, TAAI, says, “The travel agents drive bulk business for the airlines and cutting commission is like cutting the long arm of the airline. It is very unfortunate that Jet Airways has announced to slash the basic commission given to travel agents. We will be meeting representatives from Jet Airways next week to have detailed discussions on the matter. We have taken the opinion of our members and will put the issues forward.”

Read More »

A sad move as agents generate bulk sales: Rajat Sawhney

Rajat Sawhney, Vice President, ADTOI, says, “It’s a worldwide strategy where all the airlines are aiming at zero per cent commission to agents and Jet Airways has followed suit. It is sad and unfortunate that though bulk of the sales is generated through travel agents, there is no incentive for them to sell their products. This is probably a unique example in business where channel partners are not given any incentive to sell their products. It is high time that agents act as advisors and sell experiences. They should sell packages under their own brand name and offer bundled products with hotels, airlines tickets, transfers, visa, sightseeing and F&B etc. The agents should discourage the selling of stand-alone products which anyway would not fetch them any revenue.”

Read More »

Maintain web parity to ensure level playing field for all: Jyoti Mayal

Opposing the move, Jyoti Mayal, Honorary Secretary General, TAAI, said, “We, as TAAI, are against the move that Jet Airways has slashed the one per cent commission for the agents effective January 1, 2018. Regarding the transaction fee, we are requesting them that they fix the rate of this transaction fee between 3.5-5 per cent for everyone and also maintain web parity so that there is a level playing field for everyone. We are meeting Jet Airways in a couple of days to take this further and also discuss procedural changes related to the same and are hopeful that Jet airways will understand our thought process and support our fraternity.”

Read More »

Airlines directly approaching customers, ignoring agents: Chitra Bhatia

Slamming Jet Airways’ move to scrap agents’ commission, Chitra Bhatia, Gen. Secretary, OTOAI, said, “I don’t think one per cent commission for agents was a big deal for the airline. Airlines need to continue the commission and partner with travel agents. Commission is a bond between the agent and the airline which should not be discontinued. Airlines are now going directly to the customer, and ignoring the agents in between. However, it is important for both the parties to work together.”

Read More »

Jet Airways scraps agents’ commission

Jet Airways is the latest airline to do away with the basic commission for IATA travel agents. The airline has sent official communication to travel agents across the country that they will not be paying them one per cent basic commission from January 1, 2018. The move comes in line with many international airlines also adopting the same route. Confirming the news, a senior airline official said that while the commission will not be there, agents can levy transaction fee of up to 3.5 per cent of the basic fare. They can also include fuel surcharge component in tickets. However, the news has aggrieved the agents, who believe that the move is not fair and the airline needs to relook at its decision.

Read More »