Tourism Breaking News

SA’s five-city roadshow sees 60-member supplier delegation

South African Tourism (SAT) began its five-city roadshow from February 12-19 with Mumbai, followed by Kolkata, Bengaluru, Delhi and Ahmedabad. The 60-member strong participation from South Africa’s travel trade industry and scale is a reflection of the strong consumer demand witnessed from India. One of the key focus areas is to go create awareness about new destinations such as Oudtshoorn, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, Port Elizabeth and the Drakensberg region. Hanneli Slabber, Regional General Manager, Asia/Australasia/Middle East, SAT, said, “The demands of Indian travellers are in a constant and rapid state of evolution. This makes cross sharing of insights, trends and observations between our Indian and South African partners extremely crucial. We have had South African products being tailored to suit these specific needs as a testament of the value proposition we see in the market.” Alpa Jani, Acting Hub-Head, Middle East/India/South East Asia, SAT, said, “We have always recorded an outstanding response from the Indian travel trade and are eagerly looking forward to seeing the positive impact this roadshow will have towards driving Indian traveller traffic to South Africa in 2018. We are also focusing on customising our engagements and product offerings to suit the unique requirements from each of our target regions within India.”  

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Indian Railways nod to share profit with tourism dept from ‘Golden Chariot’

The Karnataka tourism department has agreed to share the profit with the Railway Board instead of collecting the huge haulage charges for running the Golden Chariot, the only luxury train of peninsular India. The train was running in loss as the Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation (KSTDC) was paying more as haulage charges to the Railways than the revenue generated. With the decision, the KSTDC will not only make  revenue from the luxury train but also generate profit for the railways. “The Railways has decided not to go for the haulage charge. They  will be sharing the revenue…whatever revenue we get will be shared between the Railways and KSTDC,” said Kumar Pushkar, Managing Director, KSTDC. He explained that earlier the Corporation made losses for many years due to very high haulage charges to Railways. Pushkar said, “The haulage charges used to be higher  than what the total revenue we were getting from the sale of  the ticket. With this arrangement, running train will be  sustainable. It can be done to promote tourism in future years  also.” Pushkar said Karnataka tourism minister Priyank Kharge had met the Railway Board chairman recently and apprised him of the challenges KSTDC was facing to continue the train. Source: PTI

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SpiceJet waives off cancellation charges for travellers to Maldives

SpiceJet has waived off cancellation, other charges for travel to and from Male between February 8-14. “For travel period between 8-14 February to and from Male, passengers opting to cancel their tickets will be offered full refund and cancellation charges will be waived off,” the company said in a statement. “For all change requests, SpiceJet will waiver the change charges only and will charge the fare difference. Passengers who do not want to travel, will be processed full refund.” On Thursday, Air India had waived off “applicable penalties of re-issuance, date change, no-show, cancellation and refund charges” for travel from or to the capital of Maldives, which is witnessing political turbulence for the period February 5-20. Source: IANS

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Jet to strengthen Bengaluru presence via second daily to Singapore

Effective March 15, 2018, Jet Airways will commence a second daily frequency from Bengaluru to Singapore. The introduction of the second frequency forms part of Jet Airways’ focus to strengthen its presence in Bengaluru as the carrier’s upcoming third hub, aside from Mumbai and Delhi. The new daily flight, 9W 26 will depart from Bengaluru at 02:05 hrs (IST) and arrive into Singapore at 09:15 hrs (LT). During its return journey, flight 9W 25 will depart from Singapore at 10:15 hrs (LT), arriving in Bengaluru at 12:10 hrs (IST). To celebrate the introduction of the new frequency, Jet Airways has announced special return Economy fares from Bengaluru, starting at INR 11,768 only. These inaugural fares are applicable for journeys commencing from March 15, 2018 onwards. Gaurang Shetty, Whole Time Director, Jet Airways said, “Jet Airways has seen an enthusiastic response from its guests travelling between Bengaluru and Singapore. This second daily service will benefit business travellers who are looking at tapping into India and Singapore’s promising commercial opportunities.” The new frequency will now offer guests from Bengaluru convenient connections to Denpasar/Bali, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur on flights operated by codeshare partners Garuda and Malaysian Airlines via Singapore.

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Austria witnesses 20.5% in visitor arrivals from India in 2017

The Austrian National Tourism Office hosted a press conference in Delhi on February 9. Partners from Vienna, Salzburg, Innsbruck, Zell am See-Kaprun and Swarovski Crystal World informed the media about the growth of visitor arrivals from India in 2017 and laid down the plans for 2018. Christine Mukharji, Director, ANTO, said, “Austria witnessed 177,700 arrivals from India in 2017, which was a 20.5 increase from 2016 and the overnights went up to 324,400, which is a 19.5% increase from last year.” Isabella Rauter, Public Relations Manager, Vienna Tourism Board; Andreas Reiter, Market Management, Spain, India and Arab Countries, Innsbruck Tourism; Inshvinder Maddh, India representative of Innsbruck Tourism; Klemens Kollenz, Sales and Marketing Manager, Salzburg Tourism; Christian Pfeffer, Marketing/Sales, Zell am See-Kaprun and Christiane Gasser, Head of Channel marketing, Swarovski Tourism Services, interacted with members of the press with interactive presentations on what each destination had to offer to Indian tourists.

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TAAI signs MoU with Faizabad university

The Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI), Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand Chapter has signed an MoU with Dr. Ram Manohar Lohia Avadh University in Faizabad, Uttar Pradesh to establish a cooperative relationship between the two that will help students of tourism. The MoU is with respect to offering a Bachelor in Vocational (B.VOC) Tourism & Hospitality Course, a three-year degree course. It will be conducted at Dr. RML Avadh University. Sunil B. Satyawakta, Chairman, TAAI – Uttar Pradesh & Uttarakhand Chapter, says, “This MOU sets the framework for the cooperative relationship between the parties to enhance quality of education in courses and designing the curriculum to make it industry relevant. This is the third MoU signed by the chapter with education institutes in the last two years. The others were with Lucknow University and Banaras Hindu University.”

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India becomes Dubai’s top source market with 2.1 million tourists

India retained the top spot on Dubai’s list of source markets in 2017, contributing 2.1 million visitors and becoming the first country to cross the two-million mark in a single year. The country’s performance represented a 15 per cent year-on-year increase and validated, among other factors, the success of Dubai Tourism’s ongoing collaboration with Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan in the #BeMyGuest campaign. Commenting on the annual performance, His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, said, “Under the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the emirate has continued to capture share of the global outbound travel market, complemented by a significant increase in tourism-driven economic contribution to the country’s GDP.” Driven by India, the South Asia region, in the third place, contributed an 18 per cent share of over 2.8 million visitors, up a strong 10.6 per cent, followed by the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and North and South-East Asia regions sharing the fourth position, each contributing close to 1.7 million visitors and independently commanding 11 per cent share, the former recording a 3.2 per cent increase and the latter, an impressive 23.6 per cent over 2016 visitation figures.  

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UAE concludes three-city roadshow in Mumbai

The National Tourism Programme (Ministry of Economy) concluded its three-city roadshow titled ‘Visit UAE’ in Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and finally Mumbai – the city that sees the maximum number of tourists visiting the UAE every year. This is the third roadshow in India in the recent few years. UAE welcomed 2.6 million Indian tourists in 2017. Abdulla Saleh Al Hammadi, Director, National Tourism Programme, said, “It gives us immense pleasure to revisit the city of Mumbai, which my country is familiar with and visits often. India is one of the most promising markets, and the UAE delegation is looking forward to build relationships and further strengthen ties with the people, especially the tourism industry, under the banner of the ‘Visit UAE’ campaign.” The ‘Visit UAE’ roadshow included a huge delegation of tourism officials, airlines, and senior members from the UAE’s tourism and hospitality industry. Local tourism departments included Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing–Dubai, Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, Ajman Tourism Development Department, Fujairah Tourism & Antiquities Authority, Dubai Police and Dubai Health Authority.

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Siliguri to host Bengal Travel Mart from February 16-18

The third edition of the Bengal Travel Mart (BTM) 2018 has been scheduled to be held from February 16-18 at Baghajatin Park, Siliguri. The objective is to establish Siliguri as a market place for gateway to the Eastern Himalayas. The event is being organised by Eastern Himalaya Travel and Tour Operators Association (EHTTOA) in association with North Bengal Development Department (NBDD) and West Bengal Tourism. Buyers from India abroad are expected to participate in the event. BTM attracts exhibitors to showcase their expertise and identify the thriving business opportunities in West Bengal.

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Belmond and Oberoi Mumbai offer trade an authentic Italian experience

Belmond Worldwide together with The Oberoi Mumbai recently organised an Italian Food Festival at the Vetro, Oberoi Mumbai, from January 28 that will go on till February 12. During this festival, Belmond Worldwide also hosted a travel trade event which included cocktails and canapes curated by Chef Roberto Gatto to celebrate the Italian flavours. Executive Chef Roberto Gatto and Executive Chef Attilio Di Fabrizio from Belmond Hotel Cipriani,Venice and Belmond Villa San Michele, Florence respectively were in Mumbai to unveil the best kept secrets of Italian cuisine. Laura Di Bert, PR Director, Belmond Italy, Spain & Portugal said, “I am proud that my chefs are attending the event, as a unique opportunity to deep dive into the Indian world through a mutual interest: food.”

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