Tourism Breaking News

SIHRA Convention 2018 to be held in Madurai from October 4-6

The SIHRA Convention 2018 is scheduled to be held in Madurai from October 4-6, 2018 on the theme “Together for a better tomorrow”. Bringing together all the southern states of India and providing abundant opportunities for the growth of the hospitality industry, the convention serves as a platform to showcase the contemporary trends, cutting edge technologies and international best practices in the rapidly growing hospitality industry. SIHRA looks at connecting the all the South Indian states and brings about varied opportunities in exploring the hospitality and tourism fraternity. This convention shall bring together individuals from varied sectors and aims at interlinking the common areas of interests within the mentioned industries. The sectors concentrated upon for this year’s convention are emerging trends, culture & culinary arts, new trends in the beverage industry, women leadership in hospitality, etc. Hari Arumugam is Chairman – Convention organising committee.

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Tourism PowerHouse discusses disruption in tourism

One of the major topics discussed at PATA India Chapter’s Tourism Powerhouse 2018 was ‘Enabling growth through disruptive tourism’. The session saw in attendance some of the stalwarts from Indian and international travel and technology sector. Moderating the session was Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA while the panelists included Jen Oreel, Founding CEO, Octotrip; Matthew Powell, Managing Director—MESA, Travelport; Sanjay Kumar, Former CCO, IndiGo and Paras Loomba, Founder, Global Himalayan Expedition. The panel discussed how the industry needs to cope up with different disrupting forces including start-ups, technology, etc by sharing real -time examples.  

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Millenials remain the buzzword

Oliver Martin, Partner, Twenty31 Consulting, presided over a session on ‘Winning the Millenial Traveller’ at PATA India Chapter’s Tourism PowerHouse 2018. He shared his insights on what millenials today are looking for and how the travel community should cater to their requirements. Martin claimed that the millennials are looking for adventure, activities and experience-based travel to a destination. He shared, “By 2030, we will have 2 billion international travellers on an international basis and it is a huge opportunity as well as a challenge for the industry.” He shared the trends on millennial travellers and said that today’s millennials are aware of what they are looking for and do take care of the environment and surroundings when they travel. “We are seeing an average growth of 9 per cent annually in the millennial market. That represents a share of 2 million travellers on an annual basis. The year 2017 was the first in the last 50 years that the boomer market declined and the millennial market increased. He said that this is the reason why the industry should focus on the millennial market,” said Martin.

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Digital marketing takes centrestage at PATA India’s Tourism PowerHouse

The second day of Tourism PowerHouse opened with a panel discussion on ‘Digital Marketing- Today’s Firepower’. Moderated by Jose Leon, President, Indigo Consulting, the session’s panelists included Nikhil Kumar, CEO & Co-Founder, TACT, Balaji Viswanath, Vice President—Digital Acquisition and Capabilities, American Express and Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA. The panelists discussed how content is the key factor to create unique stories for travellers across all mediums and how they are leveraging digital technology. They claimed that making unique stories for every state in India is crucial instead of every state promoting everything to travellers.

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Mario Hardy closes Tourism PowerHouse 2018 with inspiring address

Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA, presented the summary remarks at Tourism PowerHouse 2018— a PATA India initiative, held recently in New Delhi. Addressing the attendees at The Park, New Delhi, Hardy said, “We live in an uncertain and a very complex world. Things are changing at a phenomenal speed. We need to prepare ourselves for the disruptions in future. At Tourism Powerhouse, we have talked about the importance of local experiences and authenticity. The wealthiest of travellers are also looking for experiences and so are the millennials. Creating these unique experiences is a challenge that the travel industry is facing to remain in the business and to remain in the interest of these future travellers. Today, it is required to create memorable experiences that people want to share on social media as well as with friends and relatives, as they are the most trusted source of information on travel.” Insisting that the focus on experiences would be key to the growth that India needs to see in tourism, he said that the Tourism Powerhouse is a great initiative by PATA India Chapter and he hopes that it becomes a regular event.

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UK records 35 per cent growth in Indian arrivals in 2017

The latest official figures from VisitBritain record 562,000 visits from India to the UK in 2017, up 35 per cent on the previous year, with Indian travellers spending a record £454 million in the UK last year, an increase of 5 per cent on 2016. Tricia Warwick, Director – Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, VisitBritain, said “India is a very important market for VisitBritain and it is fantastic that more people than ever are travelling and enjoying experiences that you can only have in Britain, from the exciting and contemporary culture to innovations in food and drink, from exploring the stunning countryside to the vibrancy of its cool cities.” “Britain is offering great value for visitors from India and we are working hard with partners including tour operators and airlines to make it easier to book and explore more of the country, inspiring more visitors to travel right now,” she said. VisitBritain is also inspiring visitors from India to put the UK at the top of the list as their must-visit destination through its ‘Find Your GREAT Britain, I Travel For…’ digital campaign launched earlier this year.  

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PATA India’s Tourism PowerHouse opens to august gathering

PATA India’s first-ever Tourism PowerHouse opened to a packed gathering on August 5, 2018, at The Park, New Delhi. The initiative is set to bring the minds of the tourism industry’s leadership together to help fully tap India’s tourism potential, in line with global best practices. The august gathering had in attendance Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism, Government of India and Chairman, PATA India Chapter; Mario Hardy, CEO, PATA; John Koldowski, an international tourism research expert; Amit Thakran, Team Leader, Consulting & Research, CAPA; SanJeet, Vice Chairman, PATA India Chapter; Jatinder Taneja, Hony. Secretary, PATA India Chapter and Vikram Madhok, Hony. Treasurer, PATA India Chapter. At the event, Koldowski delivered the keynote address on ‘Tourism Trends & Opportunities’. He said, “India is perceived as the PowerHouse of South Asia tourism. According to UNWTO data, the numbers in terms of international tourist arrivals into Asia between 200o and 2017, have climbed dramatically.” Hardy spoke about the impact of the visitor economy. He said, “India has a phenomenal history. A better way to market the country is to have people of India telling stories. We are experiencing phenomenal growth in travel and tourism. Around 1.3 billion people have crossed borders and the number is increasing still. But, are we prepared for continuous growth?” He added, “By 2050, there will be 11 billion people living on this planet. Think of the implication of this – the infrastructure requirement for the 80 per cent living in the city. We, at PATA, are transforming our organisation for it to become more about thought leadership. Where does India want to be in 50 years from now? It is about the type of tourist you want to have in …

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Rashmi Verma highlights 3-pronged strategy at PATA India’s Tourism PowerHouse

Highlighting areas where the Ministry of Tourism will spend more on promotional activities, Rashmi Verma, Secretary, Tourism and Chairman, PATA India Chapter, spoke of the Ministry’s three-pronged strategy at PATA India’s first-ever Tourism PowerHouse held at The Park, New Delhi. “We have a three-pronged strategy for increasing inflow to the country. First, we have G2G interactions; 16 MOUs have been signed in this regard. The second is promoting through B2B interactions, where we have employed a number of methods. We have been participating in all major world tourism marts that give us an excellent opportunity. Apart from that, we have roadshows in which we lead a delegation of the industry and give a platform to them for further networking. This year, we’re taking things a step forward and organising India Travel Mart in September, which is likely to get 250 buyers from around the world. The third part of the strategy is more B2C interactions. How we reach out to consumers is the third aspect of our strategy,” she elaborated.

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10 out of 11 Indian cities registered increase in average daily rates this year

Ten out of eleven markets registered stability or increase in average daily rate (ADR)s in the first half of the year, according to recent report by leading investment firm, JLL. Mumbai is the leader in absolute RevPAR and Delhi is the leader in RevPAR percentage change in H1 2018 over the same period last year. Raj Rana, Chief Executive Officer- South Asia, Radisson Hotel Group said, “The overall business sentiment in the hotel industry has been high in 2018 and it may well be marked as the beginning of a sustainable upswing. Buoyed by occupancies touching 70 per cent in many markets and average rates registering improvement, the industry seems to be headed in the right direction. Having braved some early headwinds last year, the industry seems to have regained strength on the back of growing demand, slowing down of supply and various initiatives taken by the government.”

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Medical tourism industry to touch $9 billion by 2020

Globally, medical tourism market is estimated to touch a market value of USD 40 bn by 2020 and Indian medical tourism industry is expected to touch USD 09 billion by 2020, according to FICCI-Yes Bank Knowledge Paper titled ‘Tourism Infrastructure Investments: Leveraging Partnerships for Exponential Growth’. India is fast developing into a medical and wellness tourism hub of Asia owing to its superior quality healthcare services offered at affordable prices coupled with a dedicated policy framework of government to promote medical tourism. Rising disposable incomes, self-awareness on personal well being and increased air connectivity has encouraged market for wellness services, tourists seeking specialised medical treatments, mainly Ayurvedic, spa and other therapies look forward to India as preferred destination.

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