Tourism Breaking News

Kerala Travel Mart to begin on Sept 27; focus on tourism resurgence from flood damage

Sending out a strong message that tourism in the flood-battered Kerala will be back on the rails in double-quick time, Kerala Travel Mart (KTM) will hold its biennial meet in Kochi from September 27-30. Being held in the wake of the devastating floods, the tenth edition of KTM will focus on measures that would lead to a strong resurgence of tourism, which is the mainstay of Kerala’s economy. The inaugural session of the four-day event, being organised by the KTM Society in association with the state tourism department, will be held at Grand Hyatt Kochi Bolgatty on September 27. In the next three days, a series of buyer-seller meets, seminars and policy deliberations will take place at Samudrika and Sagara Convention Centre at the Willingdon Island. “The response to this edition of KTM has been overwhelming with 395 overseas buyers and 1,095 domestic buyers having registered as participants. The complete list of participants for the buyer-seller meet will be released on September 10,” said Baby Mathew, President, KTM Society. KTM will serve as a strong platform to showcase its time-tested as well as new products of Kerala. The new products launched by the state government like the Malabar River Cruise project, focusing on nine rivers in north Kerala, will be showcased before the delegates.  

Read More »

Gurbaxish Singh Kohli elected as new president of HRAWI

Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Director, Pritam Hotels has been elected as the President of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI) at the 68th Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Mumbai. Prior to being elected as the President, Kohli served as Senior Vice President of the association. Prrem Tiwari, former Vice President will now serve as Sr Vice President along with Sherry Bhatia acting as the Vice President and Pradeep Shetty as the Honorary Secretary. Nirav Gandhi will continue in the office as Jt Honorary Secretary with Dilip Kothari as the Honorary Treasurer and Aspi Nallaseth as Secretary General. “The HRAWI has made tremendous progress, and I would like to congratulate my predecessor Dilip Datwani and his team for doing an outstanding job during his term. From here, it is my intent to complement the efforts made so far by the association and maintain the momentum. I also hope to engage with the government, concerned authorities and other trade bodies as best as possible for the benefit of our fraternity. We will focus on resolving issues that are potential hindrances for the industry’s growth and will align efforts to best address and meet our members’ needs,” says Kohli. A second generation hotelier, Kohli is the owner of Dadar’s famous Pritam restaurant and who set up the iconic Pritam da Dhaba and the four-star Hotel Midtown Pritam in the 80s.

Read More »

Thomas Cook India eyes strong growth in Delhi-NCR, opens new office in Faridabad

Thomas Cook (India) has strengthened its presence in Faridabad with the inauguration of a new branch at SCF 51, First Floor, Sector 15, Faridabad. It was inaugurated by Romil Pant, Senior Vice President and Jatin Sharma, Associate Vice President, Thomas Cook (India). This expansion augments Thomas Cook India’s distribution and reach in Faridabad and Delhi-NCR to 16 consumer access centres – six owned branches and 10 Gold Circle Partner (franchise) outlets. Thomas Cook India’s internal data had highlighted Faridabad/Delhi NCR as a high potential source market for its holiday business. Hence, in an initiative to harness this opportunity, the company has identified Faridabad to set up its new Gold Circle Partner franchise outlet. Rajeev Kale, President & Country Head – Leisure Travel and MICE, Thomas Cook (India) said, “The North market has been identified as a prime growth driver and continues to deliver strong growth of 32 per cent YoY for our leisure travel business. Delhi NCR offers us significant potential and we have selected one of Faridabad’s prime localities for our new branch.” Gold Circle Partner Mamta Arora, a resident of Faridabad is an industry veteran. Her domain expertise and relationships/contacts will assist Thomas Cook in establishing and growing the market.

Read More »

DDP wins 2 awards at 34th IATO Convention in Visakhapatnam

In yet another display of excellence in journalism, Team DDP collected two awards for outstanding reportage presented by the Indian Association of Tour Operators (IATO) at its recently-concluded 34th annual convention held in Visakhapatnam. The team was awarded for Tourism Breaking News as best online media as well as for IATO Manual. TravTalk magazine brought out two special daily issues during the three-day convention, highlighting key issues that the event was focusing on. The team thanks IATO for recognising its efforts and hopes that it continues to break boundaries in covering pertinent issues that plague the travel industry.

Read More »

IATO brainstorms on key issues on the first day

With a day stacked with business sessions focusing on imperative issues and state presentations, the audience was treated with intense discussions on day one of the two-day convention in Vishakhapatnam. The day started with the conventional IATO Run for Responsible Tourism in the morning. The first session of the day aimed to highlighted the challenges of touching the ambitious milestone of 20 million foreign tourist arrivals within the next few years. The panelists also touched upon the ways in which this can be achieved. The second session brought together members of key hotel companies face to face with tour operators to discuss what both industries can do to help the other since it is getting harder and harder to do business, whether it is the hotels or the travel trade.  The following session had an all-women panel who spoke about their personal experiences that are evidence that India is a safe country. However, they did present ways in which the safety of women travellers could improve. The final panel discussion, moderated by Rajesh Mudgill, MD, Planet India Travels, deliberated on how to change one’s business to adapt to the changing mindset of today’s travellers. In between the state presentations and panel discussions, the audience also took advantage of individual presentations made by Nakul Anand, Chairman, FAITH; an informative session on how travel agents can use digital marketing by Avijit Arya, Founder, Internet Mogul.  

Read More »

Domestic air traffic rise to 21.79% from January-July YOY: DGCA

Domestic air traffic has grown by 21.79 per cent from January-July YOY, according to a latest report by Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). Passengers carried by domestic airlines during January-July 2018 were 800.40 lakhs as against 657.21 lakhs during the corresponding period of previous year. The passenger load factor in the month of July has shown a declining trend compared to previous month primarily due to the end of tourist season, the report said.

Read More »

15 per cent increase in travellers to, from and within India: IATA

In 2017, more than 158 million passengers flew on routes to, from and within India, according to a report by IATA, titled ‘The Future is Bright… But Not Without Its Challenges’. This represents an increase of almost 15 per cent over 2016 and is the third consecutive year of growth in the order of 15-20 per cent per year. The reports for 2018 year-to-date suggest that India is on track to record a fourth straight year of double-digit passenger growth. The strong performance of air passenger demand growth in India has not been confined to just the past few years, however; the total number of air passengers has more than doubled over the past seven years, from a level of 79 million journeys undertaken in 2010, the report said.

Read More »

39% of Indians plan travel during weekends: Amadeus

About 39 per cent of Indians do most of their travel planning during weekends, which is higher than the regional average of 32 per cent, according to Amadeus’ Journey of Me Insights report. This is followed by other options like 24 per cent during holidays, 17 per cent after work on weekdays and 13 per cent while at work . Only 7 per cent of respondents plan their travel while commuting from one place to another, the report said.

Read More »

Mauritius plans to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists in 2020

Mauritius is aiming to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists in 2020, up from 88,000 people expected to visit the island nation this year, a senior official from that country said. At a recent four-city India roadshow organised by Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority (MTPA), Arvind Bundhun, Director, MTPA, said that 80,000 tourists from India had visited his country last year. “In the last four years, Mauritius tourism has seen double digit growth, with Indian tourists contributing significantly to this. We are looking to attract 1.2 lakh Indian tourists to our country in 2020,” Bundhun said. He said that Mauritius has positioned itself as an affordable luxury destination which offers tourists different activities like golf, spa, sky diving, zip lining among others. “In order to create more visibility, we are inviting celebrities and top CEOs from India to Mauritius. Special packages are being offered to promote incentive trips,” Bundhun informed. He added that the wedding segment remains an attractive niche, with a lot of newly-wed Indians choosing Mauritius as a honeymoon destination. Bundhun said that Bollywood was also finding Mauritius attractive with its film promotion policy, adding that some Indian movies had been shot there recently. “Between October 17-19, the Mauritius Film Development Corporation is organising cinema week and a number of Bollywood stars have been invited there. The government has put in place special incentives to shoot movies in our country,” he said.

Read More »

Sarovar Hotels & Resorts signs Yeha Hotel in Ethiopia

Expanding its overseas portfolio, Sarovar Hotels has announced the signing of its latest project in Africa with Yeha Hotel – A Sarovar Premiere Hotel, a luxury property in Axum, Ethiopia. This development signifies Sarovar’s focus on Africa and the latest addition to its existing portfolio of properties in Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania and Zambia. Yeha Hotel- A Sarovar Premiere Hotel will be a modern, luxurious development with a revolving restaurant and bar. It will also have the latest amenities in conferencing and meeting, a swimming pool, water amusement park and a kid’s playground. In the first phase, it will launch with 78 keys in October 2019, with plan to expand to 222 keys by 2021. Ajay K Bakaya, Managing Director, Sarovar Hotels, says, “The hotel is an important addition to our rapidly growing footprint in Africa and reflects the strong traction the brand is gaining in the region.  We see great growth potential in this market with high demand and this development makes a momentous step in our growth and expansion strategy in the overseas market.” Some of the openings of Sarovar Hotels this year include hotels in Jaisalmer, Gorakhpur, Dehradun, Katra, Lusaka and Dar Es Salaam.  

Read More »