Category Archives: Agents

Thomas Cook India launches no cost EMI-powered innovative ‘Holiday Basket’

Thomas Cook (India) has launched Holiday Basket – an innovative EMI-powered holiday solution, offering Indian travellers inflation-proof credit based holidays. Thomas Cook India’s data reveals an upwards of 30% demand from young travellers between the age group of 25 – 35 years, who believe in instant gratification even in travel; and through the launch of holiday Basket, it aims to tap into these growing aspirational travel demands. According to recent reports, demand for personal loans for travel purposes grew by 55%, out of which 85% are millennials. A recent survey by Thomas Cook India further validated the strong potential of EMIs for travel, reporting a healthy double digit growth in enquiries from customers across various subsets, especially India’s millennials and middle-class segment. Interestingly, Thomas Cook India’s internal data reveals two key insights on travel trends amongst Indians: 1) a growing aspiration to travel twice in a year with one international long haul vacation and one domestic short haul vacation; and 2) the most preferred domestic destinations for a first time traveller include Andaman, Kerala, Ladakh, Goa, Himachal and the North East, and Bhutan, Thailand, Singapore, Mauritius, Dubai, Bali, Phuket, and Sri Lanka, as international choices.

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Cox & Kings enters strategic tie-up with RCI in India

Cox & Kings has entered into a strategic tie-up with RCI to facilitate ancillary travel services for their India membership base. The tie-up will provide RCI members with all facilities under one roof while on a RCI holiday; be it visa processing, air tickets or transfers. The concept of vacation ownership is fast gaining ground in India with increasing number of vacationers finding timeshare more appealing and cost-effective. According to JP Singh, COO, Sales & Distribution, Cox & Kings, “We are happy to partner with RCI whose members in India can avail of our expertise in travel management to complete their holiday experience. ‘’ Cox & Kings has over 170 offices across India spanning metros and mini-metros and all located in the key tourism source markets.  We also have a 24X7 call centre to facilitate travel fulfilment of all the RCI inquiries.   Commenting on the tie-up, Aruna Jathar, Director- Marketing, RCI India, said, “It has always been our endeavour to provide the best travel and stay experiences to our members across the globe. We have invented and reinvented our strategies to meet the changing needs of new age travellers and to enhance their overall experience. This tie-up with Cox & Kings will enable RCI members in India who have booked their timeshare vacations overseas to enjoy the various travel related services seamlessly.’’

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Guideline Travels looks to add to its list of channel sales partners

Mumbai-headquartered Guideline Travels, which also sells B2B and B2C tour packages, is looking to add to its list of channel sales partners. It currently has 11 such partners pan India. Pradeep Saboo, Partner, Guideline Travels LLP, says, ““Most people don’t know this but we are more than cruises. We have been selling Europe for more than 15 years and US for more than nine years. In fact, we bring out our own brochure with global itineraries like Europe, US, Australia, and New Zealand. For B2B, I only sell group tours and not FIT tailor-made packages. We currently have 11 channel partners, apart from our own four offices, in cities like Hyderabad, Chennai and even Raipur and are looking to add more in various cities. We train these agents in Mumbai and give them 25 of our brochures.” He adds that the packages are completely inclusive and they have a policy of no optional sightseeing on tour. All meals, tips, insurance are included as well. Moreover, all meals are vegetarian/Jain, except the breakfast which is at the hotel. But this has not stopped non-vegetarian clients because of its all-inclusive deal. While it also sells to agents outside of its 11 channel partners, the commissions differ, giving more advantage to the partners. There is no joining fee for agents who are free to conduct their regular business except group tours. Saboo adds, “We need active agents. They don’t need to be exclusive with us, except when it comes to package tours, which needs to be done only with us. We offer them continuous guidance and their clients can call us directly for clarifications. Moreover, we don’t require a minimum guarantee.”

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Sentosa signs 3-year MoU with Thomas Cook India

Sentosa Development Corporation (SDC) has chosen Thomas Cook (India) to sign a strategic agreement that involves bringing more tourists from India to Sentosa. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for this was signed between Mahesh Iyer, Executive Director and CEO, Thomas Cook (India) and Quek Swee Kuan, CEO, SDC in Mumbai. This three-year strategic agreement is aimed to strengthen Sentosa’s position as a top-of-mind destination for all Indian tourists visiting Singapore, increase Sentosa’s capture rates of the India market particularly in tier 2 and 3 cities, and grow visitorship to and spend on the island. To this end, both parties will collaborate on a multipronged effort comprising activities such as product development, joint consumer promotions, as well as publicity to raise Sentosa’s profile in the India market.   According to Sentosa’s visitorship numbers, India is currently ranked as the island’s top source market. While Sentosa has been featured as part of Thomas Cook India’s Singapore portfolio, the company has now focussed on curating exclusive Sentosa packages as well. Additionally, as part of the partnership, Thomas Cook India will offer enhanced access to multiple Sentosa attractions, coupled with exciting promotions and special offers on accommodation and attractions.  

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‘Tourism MasterClass’ by PATA India Chapter to be held on May 15 in Delhi

PATA India Chapter’s First ‘Tourism MasterClass’ to be held on May 15, 2019 at the Le Meridien, New Delhi from 9:15 am – 5:30 pm for tourism professionals. It is a platform for gaining knowledge and learning from the experiences of well-known leaders of the tourism fraternity. MasterClass is targeted to attract middle to senior business leaders and help to add to their professional strengths to deliver a differentiated and profitable product offering  and will be inaugurated by Assistant Director General (ADG)- Meenakshi Sharma, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India.

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Akbar Holidays to conduct 5-city seminar with Tourism Malaysia Mumbai

Tourism Malaysia Mumbai in association with Akbar Holidays has announced a five-city product briefing seminar. It is scheduled to be held in Bhubaneshwar on May 14, Raipur on May 16, Bhopal on October 15, Nagpur on October 17 and Kochi on November 6, 2019. The seminars aim to highlight Malaysia as a value-for-money destination and showcase its product offerings and attractive packages. Its tourism offerings range from million-year-old rainforests, islands and beaches to shopping and luxury holidays. Product partners of Tourism Malaysia i.e Resorts World Genting, Legoland and Lexis Resort, Swiss Hotels, Air Asia and Penang Convention and Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) will be present to showcase their products. Mohd Hafiz Hashim, Director Tourism Malaysia Mumbai said, “We are happy to announce our five-city seminar in Bhubaneshwar, Raipur, Bhopal, Nagpur and Kochi. We look forward to a fruitful association with Akbar Holidays to boost Indian tourist to visit Malaysia and this will help us to promote our Visit Malaysia 2020 vision. Malaysia is a bio-diverse country with rich traditions and culture. Our natural environment surrounded with rich flora and fauna, pristine beaches, theme parks, adventure activities, nightlife are very appealing to Indian tourists. They can enjoy luxury at an affordable price in Malaysia.” India tourist arrivals recorded an increase of 8.6 per cent with 600,311 in 2018 as compared to 552,739 in 2017.

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MakeMyTrip forays into corporate travel, acquires Quest2Travel

India’s largest online travel aggregator, MakeMyTrip has entered the corporate travel business after acquiring majority stake in Mumbai-based firm, Quest2Travel. Commenting on the deal, Deep Kalra, founder and group CEO, MakeMyTrip, said that the buyout will help the online travel aggregator extend its offerings to large corporates for their travel requirements. “With this investment, we are making a decisive foray into providing travel solutions for corporate customers as well,” Kalra said while declining to disclose the amount of the deal. Recently, in a share-swap deal with South African internet giant Naspers, China’s largest online travel agency Ctrip increased its share in Nasdaq-listed MakeMyTrip to about 49 percent, along with 4 percent of total voting rights.   In a statement, Abhay Rangnekar, Chief Executive, Quest2Travel said that this partnership is a perfect fit because it combines the best in corporate travel with the leader in non-corporate travel. “Amongst other benefits, it will help us offer superior service offerings with wider inventory and better pricing for air, hotel bookings and other employee travel services,” he said.   Q2T’s enterprise software allows corporates to manage end-to-end travel needs of their employees on a realtime basis.  

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TBO Group announces its first ‘B2A’ strategy

TBO Group unveiled its industry first ‘B2A’ strategy at the Arabian Travel Market. Talking about this new strategy, Gaurav Bhatnagar, Co-founder TBO Group, said, “B2A for us means two things – Back 2 Agents which is an acknowledgement of the fact that more and more travellers are now going back to travel agents for advise and bookings. Studies show that millennials are increasingly feeling fatigued by the information overload and lack of trust in online channels. Further, as people’s travel needs mature, they look for more and more exotic experiences which can’t be booked online. B2A also means Business 2 Agents. Travel Agents provide the most effective distribution and marketing channel for destinations, hotels and experience providers to reach out new customers. TBO platform has over 47,000 travel agents across more than 100 countries. TBO Academy is an innovative learning platform which allows travel bookers to learn about new destinations. We encourage all travel suppliers, and specially hotels to think about the B2A channel differently from the B2C and B2B channels to reach out to the offline customers without fear of rate abuse” The travel distribution business has so far largely been segregated between B2C and B2B. While B2C stands for direct to consumer OTAs, B2B has been used to broadly cover all other indirect distribution channels. TBO believes that this kind of classification short changes a very important part of the distribution change – Travel Agents. Travel Agents account for the bulk of travel sales globally. Travel Agents act as a very important link between travel suppliers and the end consumers, educating travellers on new destinations, new hotels and new experiences. Travel Agents provide end to end fulfilment for …

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Corporate Alliance Group acquires Meet 2 Travel

Vineet Gopal, Director, Meet 2 Travel said,” We are excited for Meet 2 Travel to join Corporate Alliance Group family. This acquisition is of two likeminded companies having same values and business interest, definitely with Corporate Alliance Group we will be bigger and better, the new M2T connect & expertise will help clients optimize their travel spend and improve their travel booking experience. The acquisition creates clear opportunities, including a significant increase in scale and network reach, volume as well, all resulting in stronger customer service.” Barun Gupta, Vice President, Sales Strategy, Business Development & Partnerships, India said this acquisition is start of new phase at Corporate Alliance Group as we are planning and shortlisted other acquisitions in near future in South Asia and South East Asia . We are excited by the exceptional opportunities we expect we will see in the future.”

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Europamundo Vacations launches special tours for the Arabic Market

Europamundo Vacations is a JTB group company, the largest travel and tourism Company in Asia. Europamundo Vacations has introduced 21 special tours for the Arabic Market with Arabic speaking tour leaders. Europamundo is majorly knows as an European coach tour operator but they also have popular coach tours to Japan, Korea, China, Mexico, Turkey etc. Globally 1,50, 000 passengers from 51 different nationalities have travelled with Europamundo. On the global tours which is just in the 3rd year of operations have already crossed 10,000 passengers this year and still counting.

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