Category Archives: Associations

TAAI’s Jay Bhatia on UFTAA’s Global Tourism Committee

Jay Bhatia, National Treasurer and Chairman (Tourism Council), Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI), has been appointed on UFTAA’s Global Tourism Committee to co-ordinate and enhance tourism initiatives among its members. National associations from over 80 countries are part of UFTAA. This was announced at UFTAA’s board meeting that was held in New Delhi on Thursday. On the appointment, Bhatia says, “Tourism from and in to India is increasing multi-fold India has now become the heart of the globe and all eyes are set on us. UFTAA and TAAI, both, endeavour to promote tourism through educating its members. At TAAI, we have already embarked on this path two years ago and have conducted various training programs for our members. This will be undertaken globally at UFTAA too.”

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AI to accept corporate credit cards for booking

Air India has agreed to accept travel agents’ corporate credit card for booking, revealed Sunil Kumar, President, Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI). Speaking in New Delhi, at the UFTAA presentation for TAAI Northern Region members, he revealed that the team of TAAI had a meeting with Ashwani Lohani, CMD, Air India; Pankaj Srivastava, Director-Commercial, Air India, and other representative of the national carrier. “I am very impressed with the response from Ashwani Lohani, Pankaj Srivastava, and the entire team of Air India on allowing travel agents to use their corporate credit cards to do ticketing. We have been consistently talking to them on the airline having no objection if a customer uses his credit card, or the agent uses the customer’s credit card. However, the agent could not use his corporate credit card to make the booking. However, they listened to us, and we are highly obliged that may be within a week, the agent corporate credit card will be used by Air India as a form of payment.”

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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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29% Indians to take more adventurous trips: study

According to findings in the latest TripBarometer study, conducted on behalf of TripAdvisor by independent research firm Ipsos, shows that 76 per cent of Asian travellers want to ‘try something new’ this year (compared to 69 per cent of global travellers). 29 per cent Indian travellers are set to take a more adventurous trips in 2016. These findings are summarised in the new PATA Connected Visitor Economy Bulletin, highlighting six key travel trends for 2016. The TripBarometer study notes that one in four Asian travellers will travel solo while 21 per cent will opt for a cruise and one in five will look for adventure travel experiences. Indonesian travellers are the biggest thrill-seekers, according to the study, with 30 per cent planning to book an adventure travel holiday in 2016. Besides this, 29 per cent Thai travellers too will take more adventurous trips. Global economic uncertainties appear to be having minimal impact upon travel budgets. The study finds that one in three global travellers is planning to spend more on leisure trips this year. Although inflation contributes to rising travel costs for some, nearly half of those planning to spend more (49%) state that it’s because they and/or their family members deserve it – for Asian travellers, the proportion is higher with 52 per cent saying they will spend more because they feel they deserve it. Thirty one percent of travellers globally believe that such spending is an important contribution to maintaining good health and wellbeing. The PATA Connected Visitor Economy Bulletin is published regularly by the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA). The TripBarometer study surveyed 34,026 consumers who are TripAdvisor website users or members, and 10,756 representatives from accommodation …

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51st FHRAI Convention in Indore from Sept 23-25

The Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) will hold its next annual convention in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, said Amitabh Devendra, Secretary General, FHRAI, adding that the tentative dates for the event are September 23-25, 2016. The theme of the convention will be ‘Brand India.’ “The contribution of Hospitality and Tourism will make ‘Brand India’ soar to great heights and help the country achieve the target of attracting one per cent share of the world tourists’ arrivals by 2020,” he said.

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TAAI invites members to join Joint Bank Guarantee scheme

Sunil Kumar, President, TAAI, said, “We will be rolling out circulars inviting our members to join the Joint Bank Guarantee (JBG) scheme by February first week and close the process by March 31, 2016. Those agents who are chosen by the National Committee for the scheme will be able to get on board with IATA effective July 1, 2016. They were anyway paid their insurance or guarantee till June 30, 2016. So, TAAI’s JBG scheme will be in place from July onwards when the new term starts for the new guarantee cover.” He however refused to share any updates on TAAI’s annual convention. This was discussed during TAAI’s Managing Committee meeting held on the sidelines of the IITT exhibition in Mumbai recently.

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PATA India Chapter’s office bearers

SanJeet, Director, DDP Group; Jatinder S. Taneja, Chairman, Travel Spirit International and Vikram Madhok, MD, A&K India, are the new office bearers of PATA India Chapter. Runeep Sangha, Executive Director, PATA India Chapter, revealed that they had received many nominations, but the new office-bearers of the executive committee for 2016-17 have been selected unanimously. Talking on the plans ahead, he said, “PATA India Chapter is now working towards developing its plans for 2016. We have a busy calendar ahead and we will be focussing on education, training and organising trade seminars, including the prestigious PATA Travel Mart in the coming year.” Vinod Zutshi, Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, automatically assumes the position of the Chairman, PATA India Chapter.

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VFS to train TAAI members

The new Managing Committee at the Travel Agents Association of India (TAAI) has initiated a training workshop on visas for its members along with VFS Global this month. Bhagwan Ramnani, TAAI Managing Committee Member and Chairman – Allied Services Committee, said, that the joint visa training program for TAAI members will be pan India. “This is being conducted for the first time. Member training is our priority. This will begin in the second week of January on a quarterly basis in conjunction with the Regional/Chapter meetings of TAAI. There are regular changes in visa processes and most embassies and consulates work with VFS Global. Hence TAAI had talks with them to conduct training sessions for our members across India on visa processing, which will not only enhance their knowledge but enable them to share it with their clients.” The first phase will be to interact with personnel from VFS Global and consulates and embassies. The second will be to impart knowledge and conduct training for front line staff by VFS Global in association with TAAI. The training will commence in Gujarat and Kolkata, followed by Southern and Northern India.

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