Category Archives: Agents

Contiki appoints MakeMyTrip as key partner

Contiki has appointed MakeMyTrip as one of their preferred sales agents (PSA). The OTA will feature Contiki’s bestseller trips and promote them through its website as well as their retail outlets and B2B channels. India is a growing market and key area of focus for Contiki, with trip bookings increasing three-fold over the past five years. With Make My Trip, Contiki hopes to further expand its reach and inspire young travellers to embark on a trip of a lifetime to Europe and beyond. With three main travel styles, Discoverer (‘see it all, do it all’), Iconic Essentials (‘stretch your budget’) and In-Depth Explorer (‘go local’), travellers have a wide variety of trips to choose from, ranging from trips spanning a few days to over one month. “Our agent partners have shared that over 80% of their millennial customers make enquiries about international travel, and most specifically Europe is trending. More importantly, the majority of our customers are searching for their trips via mobile and digital devices. As Contiki offers trips specifically for 18 to 35-year-olds, and with our diverse range of 300 trips across 6 continents, we are excited to embark on this partnership with MakeMyTrip to connect with young travellers seeking worldwide adventures where they can travel with no regrets. We know that our customers are after local insight, and are looking for experiences that they may not be able to find on their own. With this in mind, Contiki is the best choice where we’ve got everything covered – from the essentials to the awesome people from all around the world that choose to travel with us!” says Timothy Su, Senior Sales & Marketing Manager, Asia. Commenting on …

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Harbour Plaza Hotels & Resorts concludes its India roadshow with 200+ customers

Hong Kong’s largest hotel group, Harbour Plaza Hotels & Resorts recently concluded its roadshow in India.  During the roadshow, from April 8 -12, the sales representatives met with more than 200 customers from corporations, professional conference organisers and travel agencies in Mumbai and Delhi. The delegates were from- Harbour Grand Kowloon, Harbour Plaza Metropolis, Kowloon Harbour Front, Harbour Plaza 8 Degrees and Harbour Plaza Resort City. “India is a key market for our hotels in Hong Kong. We like to bring to our business partner the latest updates and development of our group which include the recently renovated Harbour Grand Kowloon lobby with the ‘Prisms of light’ – a chandelier of 150,000 pieces Swarovski crystals. In the third quarter of this year, a new tower extension of the hotel with 360 brand new guest rooms and suites, all with a panoramic view of either the city or the harbour, will be opened. This will bring the total room inventory to close to 1,000, becoming one of the biggest 5 star hotels in Hong Kong”, said Priyanka, Director of Nijhawan Group, GSA for Harbour Plaza Hotels & Resorts in India. “We’re opening this fall a brand new hotel, which will bring the group’s total room inventory in the city to more than 9300 rooms. Hotel Alexandra, with 840 guest rooms, is well located at the North Point harbour front. The hotel is designed exquisitely melding sophisticated French neoclassicism with contemporary elements, a combination of timeless affluent elegance and modern concepts delighting even the most discerning travelers. The lobby is adorned with rich red and gold colour, accented on numerous grand chandeliers with a judicious use of mirrors, flower engraved golden doors, …

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ADTOI to open two new chapters in Madhya Pradesh & Tamil Nadu

The Association of Domestic Tour Operators (ADTOI) has recently opened its Northeast Chapter in Guwahati. Rajesh Arya, Vice President, ADTOI, says, “Recently we opened our 10th chapter in the Northeast. Further, we are likely to open two more chapters shortly after the elections- Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. The timeline we are looking at is, July-August. Also, the convention is due this year, which we will conduct in August or September, most likely.

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Mazda Travel partners with APT to bring their Canada & Alaska programs to India

Mazda Travel has partnered with APT to offer their Canada & Alaska tour and cruise programs exclusively to Indian travel agents. Mernoz Shastri, Director, Mazda Travel, says, “We are well-known as the India GSA for the Rocky Mountaineer. It was only logical that we partner with APT who have over 90 years history as Australia’s largest and most successful tour operator. Their award-winning Canada and Alaska tours make Mazda Travel a one-stop shop for Indian agents wanting to offer their clients the trip of a lifetime to this beautiful part of the world.” APT offers unique inclusions in their fully-inclusive programs that include ‘Freedom of Choice’ dining where guests are free to choose when, where and who they dine with from multi-choice menus in a variety of restaurants. ‘Freedom of Choice’ sightseeing allows them to select the activity that best suits their interest from a comprehensive range of options, along with guaranteed view rooms at Fairmont hotels and Resorts, luxurious Wi-Fi equipped coaches and the best tour directors in the business.   Another feature of the APT range is the inclusion of a seven-night Inside Passage Cruise on Holland America Line or Princess Cruise ships. Craig James, Sales Manager, APT, says, “We always have the cruise at the end of your land tour, it’s a highlight amongst many great experiences and it is wonderful to enjoy the land tour but still have the spectacular cruise to look forward to.” APT tours have no hidden extra costs or optional excursions.  All tipping, round-trip airport transfers, porterage, port charges and more are all included in the commissionable price.   Explaining why Mazda Travel chose to partner with APT, Shastri says, “I spend …

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TPConnects helps airlines improve travel retailing experience by achieving IATA ONE Order Certification

TPConnects, a new generation global travel technology provider to the airlines and travel sellers, has announced that TPConnects was granted “ONE Order Capable” status as an Order Management System for its ONE Order-based solution, under the ONE Order Certification Program. This certification recognizes that TPConnects ONE Order-based solution, “Offer and Order Management System” supports deployments using Accounting and Delivery capabilities for Flights and Ancillaries whose schemas are compliant with the standard ONE Order message schema, version 18.2. ONE Order is an IATA messaging standard that aims to modernize reservation systems by combining passenger information currently held in different systems into one record. The IATA ONE Order program will simplify airline reservation and accounting systems by gradually phasing out Passenger Name Records widely known as PNRs, Electronic Tickets (ETKTs) and Electronic Miscellaneous Documents (EMDs) and replacing them with modern “internet-era” Order records. ONE Order extends the capability of the Order Management System and complements IATA New Distribution Capability Standard (NDC). This gives airlines the ability to see the passenger’s full travel experience, making it easier to provide specific services and personalized experiences for travelers to purchase. Rajendran Vellapalath, Chief Executive Officer, TPConnects said “We are pleased to be one of the first travel technology provider to achieve IATA One Order recognition. Along with IATA NDC highest level certification the ONE Order designation solidifies the great progress made by TPConnects Offer and Order Management solution in helping airlines reduce complexity and become better retailers While the NDC based Offer Management Solution of TPConnects is maturing with different airlines customizing the product as per their business requirements, our main focus recently has been to encompass the implementation of retail industry standard Order Management …

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Trafalgar offers up to 15% discount over and above its 5% VIT

Trafalgar has launched a brand new offer called Real Travel Deals – ‘Here Today, Gone Tomorrow’ up to 15 per cent in line with customer demand for better deals. Like the tagline suggests, these deals won’t last. This is over and above an additional five per cent VIT (Very Important Traveller) discount that is offered to travellers on select trips. Gavin Tollman, CEO, Trafalgar, says, “We are and will always be the AgentsFirst brand, and aligning our offering to the needs and demands of our agents and customers is our first priority. We know customers have been waiting to book their 2019 travels and are now craving enticing on the spot offers, so they can book and secure the trip of their dreams, and let the excitement of their upcoming travels begin.” Trafalgar has 302 trips that visit all seven continents around the world. With 58.3 per cent repeat booking rate for India,  a 4.7/5 independent satisfaction rating on Feefo, and a recently announced 100% Definite Departures on all Europe and Britain 2019 trips, guests planning to travel this Summer can take advantage of these savings.

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Ark Travels sets target of 100,000 cruise pax from India on Dream Cruises

Ark Travels has set its target of touching the 100,000-passenger mark by 2020 end. Ark Travels concluded 2018 with 58,000 pax on Dream Cruises. This was announced by Kishan Biyani, Managing Director, Ark Travels at the recently-concluded fourth edition of ‘Big Bang Nautical Fiesta’. It is the biggest cruising event organised by Ark Travels which was held this year from March 3-6, 2019 on-board Genting Dream for the first time ex-Singapore. Organised in alliance with Genting Cruise Lines’ Dream Cruises, Ark Travels promoted the three-night sailing from Singapore (Marina Bay Cruise Centre) to destinations line Penang and Langkawi and hosted 400 travel agents from across India. Biyani adds, “The Big Bang Nautical Fiesta cruising event was planned to educate our travel agents by giving them the first-hand experience while on the cruise ship. The event was to highlight how different experiences like Neon Party, Live Band Performance, Gala Nights can be created to attract different segments of travellers like FITs, MICE and Weddings groups. With all the education program and guided ship tour conducted on board the vessel we are more than sure that this FAM trip will help our travel community to further understand the nitty-gritties of selling cruise vacations to the Indian travellers. Cruise tourism in India is undergoing a phenomenal change with minimum of 15 per cent growth year-on-year. Going forward we aim to reach the golden mark of 100,000 passengers by 2020 end. New cruise ships and itineraries coming in Asia Pacific sectors like Explorer Dream by Genting Cruise Lines will create further opportunities for the trade. Our aim is to host 500+ travel agents on Explorer Dream in 2021 with Alaskan itineraries.” Naresh Rawal, Vice-President, …

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Aurora Expeditions appoints Mazda Travel as exclusive GSA in India

Aurora Expeditions appoints Mazda Travel its GSA in India. Aurora Expeditions is an Australian-owned polar voyaging company founded by renowned mountaineer and explorer, Greg Mortimer, and his wife Margaret. Over the past 27 years it has gained expertise in small-group, expedition-style travel to the polar regions and other equally wild and remote location in both hemispheres. With this new partnership, travellers from India will be able to book Aurora Expedition voyages through their local travel agent. Air services from India operating via Middle East and European cities, will makes both the Antarctica and the Arctic regions more accessible to the India consumer. Mernoz Shastri, Director, Mazda Travel, said, “Mazda Travel’s partnership with Aurora Expeditions will provide travellers in the region with a chance to experience something truly special – an expedition voyage to the Polar Regions. Our research shows travellers from India are looking for unique travel experiences to exceptional destinations, which each of Aurora’s voyages fulfils.” Craig Upshall, Europe, the Middle East and Africa – Sales Director, Aurora Expeditions, said, “Mazda Travel’s extensive experience, along with its superior customer service, makes it the perfect partner for Aurora Expeditions in this region. We look forward to bringing Aurora Expeditions unparalleled expertise and unmatched travel experience to guests from India.” Some of their voyages offer sea kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, camping on the ice, polar diving and snorkelling. Others offer skiing and snow-shoeing, mountaineering and trekking and even expert photographic tuition. Aurora Expeditions expert guides including naturalists, geologists, historians and polar specialists.

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IAAI welcomes new Maharashtra committee members

The IATA Agents Association of India (IAAI) welcomed its new committee members for its Maharashtra chapter in Mumbai recently. The new team includes, Manish Synghal, Dimaz Aviation as President, Rajesh Acharya, Balaji Travels as Vice President, RT Iyer, Farsak Travels as Secretary, and Sarosh Parakh, Aero Agencies as Treasurer. The Managing Committee members include Arvind Tandon, Ark Travels, Rosita Haribal of Travel Forte, Neelu Bhat of Welcome Travels, Chetan Gandhi of Travel 360 Tours & Travels and Siddhartha Shah of Primark Travel House. Presided over by Biji Eapen, National President, IAAI, the team conducted its Annual General Meeting followed by a networking evening. Eapen said, “The previous Maharashtra Committee headed by Chetan Gandhi and Siddharth Shah couldn’t get enough time to actively take forward IAAI matters due lack of time and support. So an extra-ordinary AGM was called on 29 December, 2018 to form an ad-hoc committee to take up the responsibility and nominated  a committee headed by Manish Synghal and team.” Since it was a nominated ad-hoc committee, he requested the floor to acknowledge and ratify the nominated committee so that they can officially take over the chapter responsibility. As the floor unanimously accepted and welcomed the new committee, Eapen requested Manish Synghal to proceed with the new team to preside over the meeting.

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Thomas Cook India to offer contactless payment across its prepaid forex cards

Thomas Cook India has announced the added benefit of contactless payments on its prepaid cards (the Borderless Prepaid Card and One Currency Card). With this feature, the company’s prepaid card users can now shop with merely a tap. Contactless payment is a secure method that enables consumers purchase products and services by using Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) technology or near-field communication (NFC). To make a contactless payment, the user merely needs to tap his or her card near a point-of-sale terminal. Contactless payment has steadily become a popular payment method for smaller purchases, with the prime advantage of enhancing the speed of transactions. It also help shorten the queue. Speaking at the launch, Kailash Gupta, Senior Vice President and Head of Payment Solutions, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd., said, “Throughout its pioneering journey, Thomas Cook India has always focussed on innovation and technology to maximise customer experience, and hence, the ‘contactless’ feature on our Borderless Prepaid Card and One Currency Card serves to reiterate our customer centric philosophy. The tap-and-go solution has been made possible by leveraging smart technology, driven by our aim of enhancing convenience and speed of transactions, an essential ask of today’s new age global traveller.”

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