Category Archives: Agents

‘Save Now Travel Later’ with C&K + RBL Bank

Cox & Kings has partnered with RBL Bank Ltd to launch the ‘Save Now Travel Later’ programme to suit every budget. In this latest offering ‘Save Now Travel Later’, travellers get an opportunity to meticulously plan their finance by opening a Recurring Deposit account with RBL Bank. This programme has been designed keeping in mind that the traveller gets an opportunity to plan their Holiday one year in advance. Karan Anand, Head, Relationships, Cox & Kings said,” ‘Save Now Travel Later’ is a well-thought programme launched keeping in mind the fluctuating market rates. Travellers can now through instalments book their future trips at today’s price with minimal or no effect on their planned travel budget.” The interest accumulated on the EMIs will be refunded back to the customer by way of a crossed cheque to be paid in favour of that customer. Rana Vikram Anand, Head – Products & Segments, Branch and Business Banking at RBL Bank said “At RBL Bank, the customer is at the heart of everything we do. We are excited to join hands with Cox & Kings to launch this innovative new product in the market. The “Save Now Travel Later” offering fulfils the travel aspirations of the growing Indian consumers by enabling them to take charge of their finances in a systematic and convenient manner.” A passenger can also cancel the trip in case of contingencies with NIL cancellation cost, if intimated within 9 months of opening the account.

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Airport development a welcome move

E.M. Najeeb, Chairman and MD, Air Travel Enterprise Group, says, “Union Budget 2016 is a welcome move and a very mature one by the Finance Minister. While the details are awaited, we are very positive and would really appreciate that the infrastructure allotment will include development in the tourism circuit. I welcome the focus on aviation industry and development of airports, which has been mentioned in the budget. The budget focused on social, agriculture, education, infrastructure and railway, and it scores seven out of ten for me.”

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Europamundo to be represented by 4 tour operators in India

Europamundo Vacations, owned by JTB (Japan Travel Bureau), one of the largest travel and tourism companies in the world, has introduced English guided tours from April this year to focus on Indian travellers and their requirements. In India, Europamundo will be represented by four tour operators— DPauls in Delhi, Guideline Travels in Mumbai,Travel Tours in Bangalore and Akbar Holidays. Europamundo brings in 84 different tours to Europe for the coming season with 3000 guaranteed departures.

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Trans India Holidays launch online travel agency

Trans India Holidays Group, one of India’s leading offline travel agencies, is now entering the online travel space with its new venture BigBreaks. It aims to touch the unreached aspect of travel planning, and customise travel plans to meet customer requirements to the last detail. Kapil Goswamy, Managing Director, BigBreaks, said, “Unlike other OTA’s which are primarily technology companies selling travel, we are a travel company adopting the latest internet technologies to give our clients the advantages of lower costs, wider variety and the convenience of 24×7 bookings. Being a late entrant in the online space may mean that other OTAs already have an established presence in the field, but it also gives us a unique advantage of having a clear picture of what needs improvement in the industry. We have modeled our services to remove the problems existing in the industry including lack of flexibility in product offering, poor responses from Customer Service teams, slow and tedious refund processes etc.  It is these important customer requirements that we seek to fulfill.” According to a survey by US-based Travel Consulting Firm Phocuswright, the size of the Indian travel market in 2014 stood at Rs 90, 000 crores, out of which the share of online travel market was just Rs 36,000 crores.

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UFTAA VP addresses TAAI agents

The Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) Western Region invited Yossi Fatael, Vice President, UFTAA, and Chairman, Air Matters, to conduct an in-depth presentation on New Distribution Capability (NDC) and IATA’s NewGen ISS in Mumbai. Also present was Sunil Kumar, President, UFTAA and National President, TAAI, and a few members of the Managing Committee. The presentation titled ‘Changing Trends in the Travel Industry and its Impact’ highlighted the travel agents’ perspective on these two important subjects. TAAI will conduct a similar workshop in New Delhi on January 30 at The Claridges from 4 pm onwards.

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Club7 Holidays gets new CEO & MD

Sriram Rajmohan has been appointed as CEO and Managing Director of Club7 Holidays Limited with immediate effect. He is currently an Independent Director in Club7 Holidays Ltd and has been instrumental in securing relationship with various tourism boards, adding new corporate customers and growing the relationship with the trade partners. In the last two years of his association with the Centrum Group he has brought in tremendous value to the group through on-line visa and other travel products. Prior to joining Centrum Group, Rajmohan was the Group CFO of Kuoni Travel India.

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Thomas Cook Mini to tap Tier III cities

Thomas Cook India has launched ‘Thomas Cook Mini’, a strategic deployment of small technology assisted outlets to tap the growth potential emerging from India’s Tier III markets. Pathanamthitta, Kerala saw the company’s inauguration of the first of its Thomas Cook Mini outlets. Mahesh Iyer, COO – Foreign Exchange & Head Visas, Thomas Cook (India), said, “With our internal data-analytics clearly revealing the untapped yet high growth potential of Tier III markets, a low-cost, rapid penetration model was mission critical, and our Thomas Cook Mini fits the bill perfectly! Such small Tech assisted outlets give us the opportunity to set up shop, test the waters and expand- with the immediacy that was demanded and we are very excited with the initial response from our new Kerala Thomas Cook Mini at Pathanamthitta.” Thomas Cook India’s internal research having highlighted the powerful growth potential for retail transactions, including burgeoning remittance opportunities, the Company conceptualised a quick deployment strategy of small technology assisted outlets to rapidly penetrate India’s underserved Tier III markets; hence the launch of its innovative Thomas Cook Mini. The outlets have been designed optimising space and will be manned by a small team, equipped with technology via mobile devices/tablets for seamless online connectivity to central systems, thus facilitating quick customer transactions. While Thomas Cook has chosen its Foreign Exchange business to pioneer this initiative, its Thomas Cook Mini outlets will see expansion to include other Travel Related Services.

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Air Arabia’s new GSA: Cozmo Travel

Sharjah-based Air Arabia, has announced a change of GSA of 10 years – from Track India to Sharjah-based Cozmo Travel. Sachin Nene, Regional Manager – India, Air Arabia, announced this on Wednesday evening at a networking evening organised by the airline for its select trade partners in Mumbai. He said, “We will be moving from Track India after 10 years and appointing Cozmo Travel as our new GSA for India. We want to assure our trade partners that business will continue as usual.”  Also present at the occasion was Shalini Rajan, Head of Sales, Air Arabia, and Jamal Abdulnazar, CEO, Cozmo Travel, from Sharjah. A part of the Air Arabia Group, Cozmo has huge expansion plans for pan-India in 2016 with a minimum budget of Rs 10 crore.

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Thomas Cook India to dissolve brand Kuoni; discontinue brand Thomas Cook after 2025

Thomas Cook will discontinue with brand Kuoni and rebrand it as SOTC India, which will operate independently, revealed Madhavan Menon, Chairman and MD Thomas Cook (India). Also, he revealed that Thomas Cook (India) will not be using the Thomas Cook brand after 2025. Talking of the new structure post the acquisition of Kuoni India, Menon said that the company has started the process of discontinuing the Kuoni brand in India. He said, “The Kuoni brand is available to us in India for one year and we plan to migrate to SOTC.” Kuoni’s outbound business will be known as SOTC India Pvt Ltd. SOTC will have an independent management team. It will continue to run the outbound business – packages holidays, corporate travel, MICE and domestic travel that will be launched. Thomas Cook India will de-merge SITA – Kuoni India’s inbound brand – and merge it with TCI. This company will be known as TCI, which will be headed by Dipak Deva , incorporate the three brands– TCI, SITA and Distant Frontiers. Further, he disclosed that The Thomas Cook India Group is allowed use of the Thomas Cook brand till 2025.  As part of its Brand Transition Strategy, the plan to hence leverage the strengths of these brands and draw up a strategy to replace the Thomas Cook brand in the long term.

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MakeMyTrip gets $180 million funding from China’s Ctrip.com

Travel website Ctrip.com has invested $180 million (about Rs. 1,200 crore) in MakeMyTrip. The deal was done in the form of convertible bonds, Ctrip.com said in a statement today. “With the investment, we will have a place in the rising online travel market in India,” said Liang Jianzhang, CEO, Ctrip.com. The partnership will benefit both companies, as there are many similarities between China and India’s online tourism, state-run Xinhua quoted Deep Kalra, CEO, MakeMyTrip. Founded in 2000, MakeMyTrip is the biggest online travel agent in India. Tourism grew by 10 per cent in the country last year, according to research company PhocusWright. Online sales rose 16 per cent last year. Ctrip.com said the move will make it easier for Chinese tourists to visit India. Over 100 million Chinese tourists visited abroad last year spending billions of dollars. The increasing numbers of Chinese tourists abroad made India and number of countries to woo them with easy visa access. India has extended the e-visa scheme to the Chinese tourists.

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