Tourism Breaking News

TTAUP’s 1st Travel Mart records over 200 attendees

The Travel Trade Association of Uttar Pradesh (TTAUP), a Lucknow based, local travel trade association organised its first Travel Trade Mart (TTM) 2017 in Lucknow. As many as 30 exhibitors showcased their products to the travel agents and tour operators of UP. These exhibitors encompassed all segments of tourism and hospitality like cruises, tourism boards, destination management companies, hotels, airlines etc. The show was attended by over 200 travel agents and tour operators from various cities in Uttar Pradesh like Lucknow, Kanpur, Bijnor, Allahabad, Varanasi, Gorakhpur, Agra, Mau, Muradabad etc. Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Minister of Women Welfare, Family Welfare, Maternity and Child Welfare and Tourism, Government of Uttar Pradesh, inaugurated the mart. Vivek Pandey, President, TTAUP, says, “This is the first time we have hosted such a show. We felt that many times it was not possible for the trade in UP to attend shows in Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai and other metro cities and unfortunately not many shows come to UP. The purpose is to offer a platform to the agents of the state to gather product knowledge, information and be connected to the various suppliers directly rather than route it through bigger cities. This would allow us to contain business of UP within UP and grow the tourism industry in the state. This year was an experiment and it turned out extremely well. Next year we will increase the scale and scope of this show manifolds.”

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Go Air to shift operations to T2 in Delhi, opening on Oct 29

Delhi International Airport Ltd (DIAL) will start the operations at the revamped Terminal-2 of Indira Gandhi International Airport on October 29, 2017 and GoAir will be the first airline to shift its entire operations to Terminal 2 with effect from 00:01 hours of 29th October 2017. The move has come as a mutual decision between DIAL and Go Air to shift operations from Terminal 1 to Terminal 2 until the completion of the expansion of T1. However, it’s a temporary move to ease the pressure of fast growing traffic at Terminal 1, so that the expansion works can be carried out at Terminal 1 effectively and efficiently. The Terminal 1 is set to be expanded from the current capacity of 20 million to 40 million per annum with 22 aerobridges, and state of the art infrastructure. The expansion process will encompass all major areas of the airport i.e. Landside, Terminal and Airside and will be completed within four years. I Prabhakara Rao, CEO-DIAL said, “In view of the robust growth in passenger traffic and upcoming airport expansion works, DIAL has revamped and is recommissioning the Terminal 2 of the IGI Airport with effect from 29th October, 2017. We welcome GoAir in its new home terminal in Terminal 2. This will enable us to start the expansion works at Terminal 1 and carry it on seamlessly.” Jeh Wadia, MD, GoAir, said: “ in order to support the government and DIAL’s plans to upgrade and expand the airport facilities as well as continuously improve the customer experience and the seamless integration of international and domestic passengers, we are delighted to move into a newly furbished Terminal 2 at IGI Airport. The move …

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Mahendra Vakharia gets the DDP Trailblazer

Mahendra Vakharia, Managing Director, Pathfinders Holidays, has been declared the DDP Trailblazer at the West India Travel Awards 2017. A travel enthusiast, Vakharia did his hotel management from Mumbai and then went on to help thousands make their dreams a reality. He is also the founder member of the Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) where he is the executive committee member and also the chairman of the western region of OTOAI. He is also the voice behind the mandate that requires all outbound agents to complete at least 25 hours of training a year to retain their active status. His first hand knowledge from personal experience is what helps him make magical itineraries for his customers and it is this self experience before selling a destination that makes him a Trailblazer. .

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Mahesh Shirodkar is DDP Game Changer

Mahesh Shirodkar, Managing Director, Tamarind Global has been honoured with the DDP Game Changer award. An industry veteran with 35 years of experience, Shirodkar has been instrumental in shaping the industry from strength to strength. He started his career with Cox and Kings and soon moved to Dubai. Upon his return he set up his own specialised company which was bought over by Kuoni Travels. Post the integration, he took over as the COO of SOTC, the flagship division of Kuoni. His hunger drove him to start his own entrepreneurial venture focusing on MICE, inbound travel, event management and weddings. Conceptualizing and initiating a ‘celebrity management company’ that changed the face of the industry was yet another of his contribution to the trade. He now has 14 offices spanning 5 countries manned by a staff of 350 people.

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4th West India Travel Awards kicks off in Ahmedabad

The fourth edition of the West India Travel Awards recognised and celebrated the achievers in the travel and tourism industry of western Indian region during a shimmering ceremony at Crowne Plaza Ahmedabad City Centre on October 15, 2017. Attended by the moguls of the industry in the region, the chief guest for the evening was Bhupendrasinh Manubha Chudasama, Cabinet Minister, Revenue, Education (Primary, Secondary and Adult), Higher and Technical Education, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs. Gracing the glitzy event also were guest of honour, Nirav Munshi, Manager (Tours & Travels), Gujarat Tourism and Dr. Marisha Kaul, Gladrags Mrs. India–North along with prominent leaders of the travel industry. Saluting the best in industry for their accomplishments, the awardees of the West India Travel Show were selected based on a unique system of jury judgement and internet voting ensuring a fair and unbiased result

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Ethiopia offers e-visas to MICE participants

Ethiopian Immigration and Nationality Affairs Main Department in collaboration with Ethiopian Airlines Group launched e-visa services for African and international participants of Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE) held in Ethiopia. MICE travellers to Ethiopia will now be able to issue their visas online, book, pay and check-in their flight with Ethiopian Airlines online. Tewolde Gebre Mariam, Group CEO, Ethiopian Airlines, remarked, “With the immense potential for conference tourism, Ethiopia has still a lot to do to tap into the sector. The launching of an e-visa service for MICE is an impetus for the exponential demand of Ethiopia’s conference tourism, saving time and cost besides inducing a modern online visa application process. Gebreyohannes Teklu, Director, Main Department for Immigration & Nationality Affairs, said, “The introduction of e-visa for MICE will provide travellers with a fast and convenient way to apply for a visa and initiate their travel to Ethiopia while ensuring absolute security of sensitive information.”

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ATPCO & SITA to launch ‘NDC Exchange’ to support adoption of IATA’s NDC

ATPCO and SITA are joining forces to provide the airline industry with NDC Exchange, an industry-owned platform to support the adoption of IATA’s New Distribution Capability (NDC) for air fares and ancillary sales. NDC Exchange will enable quick adoption of NDC, lower the cost of compliance to the schema, while supporting complex interlining as airlines migrate to the new distribution format. “Participating in NDC Exchange as the launch pilot carrier provides an enormous amount of potential benefit to Air Canada” said Keith Wallis, Director of Global Product Distribution for Air Canada. “Beyond the obvious technical benefits of speed to market with an NDC-compliant API and the ability to support multiple standards and schemas, Air Canada is keenly interested in the community effect, whereby the benefit of a distribution network of like-minded partners grows exponentially with each new participant in NDC Exchange.” NDC Exchange will facilitate the real-time exchange of pricing, shopping and ancillary messages between airlines, travel agents and aggregators. It will normalize messages that use various versions of the NDC schemas. In addition, it will translate messages that are based on non-NDC schemas such as the Open Travel Alliance (OTA) XML schema. In doing this, ATPCO and SITA will support accelerated industry implementation of APIs and NDC while creating interoperability between the existing distribution model and NDC. This will reduce the overall cost to connect to, and support, multiple schema versions. Rolf Purzer, President & CEO, ATPCO, said: “ATPCO recognized the growing demand for simple, cost-effective API connectivity some time ago. In our partnership with SITA, we have developed this solution to enhance the complex distribution landscape, giving everyone a clear path to incorporate all methods of distribution.” Ilya …

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KTO launches specialist online training programme in India

The Korea Tourism Organisation (KTO) launched its first ever South Korea specialist programme in India with an aim to educate Indian travel trade partners about the travel assets of South Korea. The content is specifically designed as per the needs, requirements and expectations of the Indian travellers. The course is structured into four modules, each focusing on different aspect of tourism offerings of the destination. Upon completion, the participants will be duly acknowledged with Korea Specialist certificates. The course is created and hosted on TravelGyaan website. After completing the module, the participants can further take up the itinerary challenge and stand a chance of winning an I Phone 8. Approximately 450 travel agents have registered for the programme so far while 170 have finished their training programme. Jong Sool Kwon, Director, KTO, said, “Indian outbound market has tremendous potential and diverse requirements based on which we would like to educate the travel trade partners about South Korea’s tourism assets. We urge all the travel agents to come forward and make the most of the knowledge we intend to impart.”

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Vistara to provide Avis India car rental services to customers

Vistara and car rental company Avis India entered a partnership to provide a seamless car rental experience to Vistara customers. Customers booked on any Vistara flight can make their airport transfer, chauffeur-driven or self-driven car reservations at the time of booking a Vistara ticket, using the ‘Enhance My Booking’ option on the airline’s website. Members of Club Vistara (CV) will get to earn 10 CV points on every INR 100 spent on making bookings with Avis, using this option. Sanjiv Kapoor, Chief Strategy & Commercial Officer, Vistara said, “It is our constant endeavour to offer our customers a seamless and superior travel experience across all touchpoints, whether it is on ground or at 35,000 feet above it. In Avis India, we find a partner that shares our passion for delighting customers with a first-rate travel experience.” Sunil Gupta, Managing Director & CEO of Avis India said, “We are committed to providing a premium and a hassle-free car rental experience to consumers across the country. Our core values of providing a safe, reliable and comfortable transportation solutions resonate with what Vistara stands for in air travel.”

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OTOAI’s national election on Nov 27

Post its successful convention in Ras Al Khaimah, Outbound Tour Operators Association of India (OTOAI) is gearing up for their national election on November 27, 2017. Making this annoucement, Guldeep Singh Sahni, President, OTOAI, said, “We are currently giving finishing touches to tasks and projects. We had previously undertaken to give the new committee a strong base in their transitory period to take our hard work even further during their tenure.” The elections will be conducted for 11 Executive Committee members who will further elect the new working committee.

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