Category Archives: Associations

80 European buyers participate in PATA-MOT roadshow

PATA India Chapter, in cooperation with Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, conducted its business development roadshow in six European cities from October 17-27, 2016, which was attended by nearly 80 Buyers from the market. Air India & Jet Airways have contributed to augment the connectivity between important European cities and India. The roadshow started in Helsinki (Finland) on October 17, and moved on to Stockholm (Sweden) on October 18, Copenhagen (Denmark) on October 20, Vienna (Austria) on October 24, Prague (Czech Republic) on October 26, and concluded in Warsaw (Poland) on October 27. PATA India Chapter’s Executive Director, Runeep Sangha, said, “We are more than satisfied with the response we have received from the European market. Since last year we have covered European Countries and hope to firmly establish ‘Share of Mind’. Scandinavia represents a high end long haul market and the interest shown by Travel Agents and Tour Operators from Helsinki, Stockholm & Copenhagen is encouraging. Vienna, Prague & Warsaw are emerging European source markets and demonstrate keen interest in India. The Indian Ambassadors in the Helsinki & Prague spoke to the participating Buyers and assured them of their fullest cooperation to not only facilitate travel to India but also partner in promotional activities. Similarly Consular staff in Stockholm, Vienna & Prague supported the Roadshows with their presence and assurance. At the event, India was represented by 14 sellers including Airlines, State Tourism Boards, Ayurveda Resorts and Destination Management Companies. Dr. U.S. Mishra, Additional Director India Tourism, Amsterdam, and Mr. Jitendra Jadhav, Additional Director, India Tourism, Frankfurt, made significant contribution to the hosting and coordination of these Roadshows were also present in their respective markets. The event brought …

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OTOAI members’ meet in multiple cities across India

Outbound Tour Operators Association of India is going to have its members’ meet in multiple cities across the country. Guldeep Singh Sahni, President, OTOAI, said, “We are planning our members’ meet in Ahmedabad, Kolkata and are also planning to have a big event in South India.” Sahni also said that the Southern and Eastern chapters  will be more active now. He added, “We are also looking at having more action in the Western chapter too.”

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Zubin Karkaria honoured with TAAI’s ‘Award of Distinction’

Zubin Karkaria, CEO of VFS Global, and CEO of Kuoni Group, was conferred with the ‘Award of Distinction’ by the Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI), for his long-standing contribution to the Indian travel and tourism industry. The award was presented to Karkaria at the 63rd TAAI Convention held in Abu Dhabi on 14 October 2016. The award recognises his pioneering and entrepreneurial spirit and his role as a mentor in the industry. Presently, VFS Global serves 51 client governments and operates in 126 countries across 5 continents. The company, which pioneered the concept of visa process outsourcing, has facilitated travel across the world by enhancing efficiencies in the visa application process and making the overall visa application experience easier and more convenient for potential travellers. The ISO 27001:2013 certified company (for Information Security Management System) has been recognized for maintaining highest levels of security, while adhering to best practices in technology, innovation, and streamlined service delivery. Karkaria, who has been a part of the travel industry for more than 25 years, established visa processing multinational VFS Global in 2001. In 2015, he became the first Asian to head the Switzerland headquartered Kuoni Group.

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ADTOI in talks with Maharashtra for next convention

P.P. Khanna, President, Association of Domestic Tour Operators of India (ADTOI) and Rajat Sawhney, VP, ADTOI, recently met with Valsa Nair Singh, Principal Secretary (Tourism & Culture) Govt. of Maharashtra, to discuss about the possibilities of organising ADTOI convention in the state. This was revealed during the ADTOI General House Meeting held in New Delhi. Both sides are listing out the deliverables to take the proposal forward, said Khanna. ADTOI also announced the formation of its various committees and the names of members who will be part of those committees. Khanna also revealed that state governments like Maharashtra, Gujarat, Punjab and Chhattisgarh to organize ‘State Specialist Programme’ for the benefit of members and their frontline staff. Chetan Gupta, General Secretary, ADTOI also informed the members about the study tour organised by Haryana Tourism to Kurukshetra.

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Skål Mumbai announces new team

The Skål International Club of Mumbai recently held its 60th Annual General Meeting in Mumbai where it announced its new team. The new incoming board has Partha Chatterjee, a veteran hotelier taking over the mantle of the President for the term 2016-2018. Others include Burjis Mehta (Vice President), Kuldeep Bhartee (Vice President), Sunil Acharya (Secretary), Vaibhav Kedia (Treasurer), Rosita Haribal (Member – Memberships), Jyot Jhaveri (Member – Memberships), Arvind Tandon (Member – PR), Ajay Chhabria (Member – PR), Sujata Mariwala (Member – Sponsorships), Vinayakk Laud (Member – Sponsorships), Kunal Sampat (Member – Events), Suresh Gulrajani (Member – Events) and Sonalee Vaz (Member FVF). Speaking about the focus of the new team Chatterjee said, “Events, Networking across Fraternal clubs and Chambers of Commerce, trade with each other and introductions to Government bodies for improving tourism in the country will be the focus for the coming year.” Carl Vaz, Outgoing  President for Skål Club of Bombay and current Second Vice President, Skål International India, said “It has been a memorable journey since taking over in 2012. We have managed to bring back Skål Bombay from the brink of closure where it languished at just around 30 odd members to over 150 as on date. Skål Bombay now boasts of a wide representation of senior travel professionals comprising travel agents and tour operators, hospitality, airlines and tourism boards. My goal of turning around Skål Club of Bombay has been achieved.” Skål Bombay has 154 members across every sphere of tourism activities from hotels, travel agents, airlines, railways, cruise liners, airports, car rentals, restaurants, golf courses, conference organisers, casinos, etc.

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MoCA & PHD’s Aero Expo from Nov 18-19

India’s first Aero Expo organised by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Ministry of Civil Aviation in association with Litmus Communications, will be held in New Delhi this November. The expo aims to deliberate on remote and regional connectivity, development of technology and infrastructure, along with the new opportunities embodied in the industry in terms of enhancing connectivity, technology integration and performance optimisation. The two-day event will take place near New ATC Tower, IGI Airport, New Delhi, in the presence of Ashok Gajpathi Raju, Civil Aviation Minister and officials from the aviation industry across the globe. The Aero Expo 2016 will also showcase aircraft, aircraft machinery and equipment, aircraft interiors, airlines, airline services and air cargo and airport infrastructure developers. Commenting on the event K. N. Rao, Chairman, Civil Aviation Committee, PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry said, “In a major boost to regional air connectivity, the recently announced plans and policies in India are noteworthy. India is already the fastest growing aviation market in the world and the move to improve regional air connectivity is expected to further boost the industry by providing a new set of growth opportunities to both domestic and international airlines alike along with a new lease to the allied aviation services and skilling industries.” “I would like to encourage professionals from the different industries to participate including national and international companies, professional associations and universities to have a memorable and rewarding event, and I am confident that we will all benefit from our mutual interaction at the event,” said Dr Mahesh Gupta, President, PHD Chamber of Commerce & Industry.

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FAITH seeks 6% GST rating for tourism & hospitality

In their latest set of interactions with GST commissionerate, FAITH has made a very specific request for 6 per cent. GST rating, at the lowest slab for the tourism & hospitality industry. The services sector is being considered for 18% and 12%, but considering that a lot of tourism sub-sectors in India are on abated rates currently & that worldwide tourism industry average indirect rates are between 6-9% Faith believes it is important to communicate the requirement for the lowest slab 6% for the industry. Additionally, FAITH has sounded the GST commissioner on the issue wrt presumptive rates & there is a likelihood that that will be considered positively. They have also sounded on export service status under section 2(44)c & have been informed that the place of provision of supply of service may being relooked at in the second draft of GST law. Over the past 4 months Faith has been running a persistent campaign with all policy makers at central & state governments to position Indian tourism on the lowest GST rate which will double the PAN India employment & GDP output resulting from tourism.

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TAFI plans at least 2 symposiums in 2017

As part of its makeover plan, the Travel Agents Federation of India (TAFI) has announced that it will be organising at least two symposiums next year. Pradip Lulla, Vice President, TAFI, said, “We will have symposiums starting next year over and above our annual convention. One of our main objectives is to get on a digital platform where we can integrate our members. The Managing Committee is working on the details of the digital platform. We have already identified the platform but basic implementation needs to be firmed up. It will be confirmed by early next year. The symposium will discuss on how to improvise our existing Joint Bank Guarantee program. The convention details will be divulged by March 2017.” He added that TAFI is also looking at new ways of educating its members on how to do business better.

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Japan is 10th largest source market for India

Japan Tourism is expanding its presence in India with a new office in Delhi scheduled to commence operations by the end of the year. This was announced at the first ever India-Japan Tourism Meet organised by FICCI in New Delhi from Oct 24-25, 2016. Dr. Jyotsna Suri, Immediate Past President-FICCI, Chairperson -FICCI Tourism Committee said, “Japan is the 10th largest source market for India with around 2.07 lakh Japanese arrivals in 2015. India has a very high potential to be one of the favoured destinations amongst the Japanese tourists, given the large number of destinations important from Buddhist interest as well as the burgeoning number of business tourists coming to India.” Giving his opinion on the summit, H.E. Kenji Hiramatsu, Ambassador of Japan to India, said that with the framework of Indo-Japan Tourism Council and Indo-Japan Tourism Summit, the industry should pursue action-oriented outcomes to improve travel and tourism relationship between Japan and India in a visible way. “This is a great opportunity for both governments and tourism industry to get together under one roof and to discuss the expansion of bilateral travel and tourism relations. The new networks that will be built among the participants today will create new opportunities,” he added.

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