Category Archives: Associations

TAFI launches new logo

The Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) has launched a new logo with a tagline “The Way Forward” at The Ashok New Delhi. The new TAFI logo was unveiled by Suman Billa, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Tourism Govt. of India along with Dr. A.K. Manocha, Chairman & Managing Director, IRCTC, in the presence of TAFI President Praveen Chugh, TAFI Immediate Past President Zakkir Ahmed, Vice President Pradip Lulla, National General Secretary Aditi Bhende, Managing Committee Member and Convention Chairman Bharat Shah and Managing Committee member Teddy Thomas among others.

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IATA seeks subsided rate of GST on flights

Global airlines’ body IATA has sought an abated rate of GST on flight tickets, saying the tax burden on the aviation sector was already high and the GST regime should conform to global standards and principles. Maintaining that the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has been ‘working closely’ with the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Secretariat here to address some issues of concern to airlines, Director General of IATA, Alexandre de Juniac said, “The GST regime needs to adhere to international standards and principles.” “We have called for a zero-rating for international flights when the GST comes into effect next April. This seems unlikely. To limit its damage to the sector’s competitiveness, we would at least hope for abatement in the rate,” de Juniac said. He said the airlines in India faced “an onerous tax burden, including the imposition of service tax to services rendered abroad, including those for overflight charges, global distribution systems and international tickets.” This, he said, was “in contravention of international principles established by governments” through the UN body International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). The IATA Director General and CEO, who met top officials of the government and Indian carriers during his two-day visit here, said he had shared these and other concerns with the government.

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DDP-TravTalk recognised for exemplary work @TAAI

Durga Das Publications (DDP) / TravTalk was recognised for its contribution and support extended to the 63rd Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) Convention held in Abu Dhabi from October 14-16. The award recognised the media support that the publication extended to the convention. A live streaming of panel discussions was disseminated amongst the delegates attending the conference. Many delegates also joined in the live streaming which allowed them to be a part of the convention despite their physical absence. The Convention discussed various industry issues on the theme- Tomorrow Begins Now; Rise Above the Routine. Stalwarts from the aviation, hospitality and tourism industry shared their opinions about the way forward for the industry in order to perform and not just survive.

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TAAI Convention opens in Abu Dhabi with 670+ delegates

The Indian Travel Congress and 63rd Convention and Exhibition of Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) opened in Abu Dhabi with over 670 registered delegates from India. The three-day event, being held from October 14-16, 2016, began with the inauguration of the India Travel Trade Expo followed by the convention inauguration in the Etihad Ballroom at Emirates Palace Abu Dhabi. The business sessions will be held on Oct 15 and 16, while he Gala Dinner will be held at Ferrari World, informed Sunil Kumar, President, TAAI, during a pre-event press conference. The theme of the convention and exhibition is ‘Tomorrow Begins Now – Rise Above Routine’. The business sessions will be based on this theme and will project strategies and trends to conquer an opportune tomorrow. Kumar also expressed gratitude to Abu Dhabi Tourism & Cultural Authority (TCA) for its support.

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PTM 2017 from Sept 13-15 in Macao

PATA Travel Mart 2017 will be held in Macao SAR from September 13-15. The 40th edition of the mart will be hosted by the Macao Government Tourism Office (MGTO). PATA CEO Dr. Mario Hardy said, “It is an exciting prospect to be returning to Macao SAR for the fortieth anniversary of PATA Travel Mart, having previously held a successful Mart there in 2010. PATA and the MGTO enjoy a very special, unique and rewarding relationship that we treasure and hold in high regard. Ms. Maria Helena de Senna Fernandes, Director, MGTO, added, “PATA Travel Mart mobilises a relevant contingent of travel trade stakeholders from the Asia Pacific region and around the world and we are enthusiastic with the perspective of providing a first-hand update about the significant developments in our city since we last met in Macao for the PATA Travel Mart 2010 and in 2005 for the PATA Annual Conference.”

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Ramesh Marwah appointed UFTAA CEO

Ramesh Marwah has been appointed the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of United Federation of Travel Agents’ Associations (UFTAA) to better administer UFTAA and offer regular support to members. He will endeavour to create increased connect between members as well. This was informed by UFTAA to all its members through a formal circular. Commenting on his position, Marwah said, “I am very excited and proud to be a part of UFTAA-the illustrious global federation which is also celebrating its golden jubilee this year. Every initiative will be in the direction of retaining confidence of travel agency associations in UFTAA; making UFTAA a global platform for knowledge, learning and networking and also maintaining free flow of communication to ensure UFTAA remains first point of contact when any issue props up in any part of the industry worldwide.” He is a proven professional with about 40 years experience of serving in various leadership positions with reputed organisations including international airlines, Italian DMC, global OTAs, etc.

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MTDC, TAAI inaugurate Mumbai Darshan tours for seniors

Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation (MTDC) recently organised special Mumbai Darshan Tours for senior citizens on the occasion of Daan Utsav – the festival of giving week. This initiative was undertaken by MTDC along with the assistance of Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI). The Mumbai Darshan Tours was inaugurated at the hands of Swati Kale, General Manager, MTDC. The tour commenced from Dadar (East) and covered all the iconic places in Mumbai like Siddhivinayak Temple, Gateway of India, Mani Bhavan to name a few.

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23.2% growth in August for India’s domestic airline market

India’s domestic airline market has posted double-digit annual growth of 23.2 per cent in August, as reported by IATA. This comes with sizeable increase in real consumer spending and partly because airlines are adding airport-pairs and flight frequencies, which cuts journey times for passengers and has the same stimulatory effect on demand as a large cut in fares. Domestic air travel, on the whole, grew by 4.3 per cent year-on-year in August, with the three-speed market still evident. On the other hand, international traffic flown by Asia Pacific airlines, the second largest international region, rose by a solid 5.6 per cent year-on-year in August. But there are ongoing signs of Asian passengers being put off by terrorism in Europe since traffic on the Europe-Asia route grew by just 1.5 per cent year-on-year in July, and it remains the slowest growing of the ‘big-four’ international routes so far this year. Asian leisure travellers are also substituting to destinations closer to home: international traffic growth within Asia accelerated to a six month-high of 9.9 per cent year-on-year in July.

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International tourist arrivals up 4% in the first half of 2016

International tourist arrivals worldwide grew by 4 per cent between January and June 2016 compared to the same period last year. Destinations worldwide received 561 million international tourists (overnight visitors), 21 million more than in 2015, according to the latest UNWTO World Tourism Barometer. Growth accelerated in Asia and the Pacific with international arrivals up 9% through June, driven by robust intraregional demand. Oceania (+10%) led growth, followed by North-East Asia, South-East Asia (both +9%) and South Asia (+7%). “Tourism has proven to be one of the most resilient economic sectors worldwide. It is creating jobs for millions, at a time when providing perspectives for a better future to people of all regions is one of our biggest challenges. But tourism is also creating bonds among people of all nations and backgrounds, bringing down stereotypes and fighting fear and distrust”, said UNWTO Secretary-General, Taleb Rifai. “Safety and security are key pillars of tourism development and we need to strengthen our common action to build a safe, secure and seamless travel framework. This is no time to build walls or point fingers; it is time to build an alliance based on a shared vision and a joint responsibility.” he added. China, the world’s top source market, continued to report double-digit growth in expenditure on international travel (+20% in the first quarter of 2016), benefiting destinations in the region and beyond. The United States, the world’s second largest market, increased expenditure on outbound travel by 8% through July, thanks to a strong currency. Third largest market, Germany, reported a 4% increase in expenditure through July. Other markets that showed robust demand for outbound travel in the first half of 2016 were Spain …

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Praveen Chugh elected as WTAAA Treasurer

Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) President Praveen Chugh has been elected as the Treasurer of World Travel Agents Associations Alliance (WTAAA) of which TAFI is a member. WTAAA held its Annual General Assembly and bi-annual Board meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, recently and elected a new board. The new WTAAA Chairman is Otto de Vries (CEO of Association of Southern African Travel Agents), and Mark Meader (Vice President of Industry Affairs American Society of Travel Agents) is the new Vice Chairman. WTAAA brings together 56 countries and represents more than 80 per cent of the BSP worldwide. WTAAA is a global voice for the travel agency distribution channel and regularly engages with IATA, UNWTO, WHO, Media, GDS, European Union, DOT and other regulators and bodies around the world. The mission of the World Travel Agents Associations Alliance (WTAAA) is to act as the global travel agency voice through the exchange of ideas and information. WTAAA members include the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA), Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), Association of Brazilian Travel Agents (ABAV), European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA), Association of South African Travel Agents (ASATA), Travel Agency Federation of India (TAFI) and Travel Agents’ Association of New Zealand (TAANZ) Spanish Federation of Travel Agents (CEAV), Federation of Asean Travel Agencies (FATA).

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