Category Archives: NTO (National Tourist Offices)

India jumps to third largest source market for Singapore

India has moved up to the third position from the fourth in terms of visitor arrivals to Singapore along with a double digit growth of 17 per cent growth until October 2017, and continues to be the third largest tourism receipts generating market for Singapore. Singapore Tourism Board (STB) has organised a two-city roadshow in Mumbai and Jaipur to deepen this relationship with the Indian travel trade. G.B. Srithar, Regional Director–South Asia Middle East & Africa, STB said, “India has always been a key source market for Singapore. We are happy to have already crossed 2016’s full year 1.1 million visitor arrivals mark from India as end October 2017. We thank all our trade fraternity for their support in bringing our destination promotion messages to our audiences. Through our roadshows, we seek to renew our ties with the travel trade, entrench existing partnerships and forge new ones through creative promotions.” Year 2017 was a landmark year for STB with strategic associations with a Bollywood movie ‘Badrinath Ki Dulhania’, participation in cruise forums, travel trade conferences, partnerships with airlines, launch of the Vegetarian Food Guide, penetration in the regional markets such as Chandigarh, Jaipur, Lucknow, etc. and the unveiling of a new brand identity.’

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Trafalgar partners with four NTOs to host educational sessions for agents

Trafalgar will host its inaugural Trafalgar Europe Britain Day as part of its efforts to provide agents a way to learn about travel destinations in Europe and Britain like an insider. It will partner with four European tourism offices in this first-of-its kind showcase exclusively for the trade in India. Atout France, Tourism Ireland, Tourism Office of Spain and Switzerland Tourism together with Trafalgar will present the iconic sites of the respective countries. Trafalgar’s ‘Insider Sessions’ will take place on February 7 in Mumbai and on February 9 in Bengaluru. Nicholas Lim, President, Trafalgar, Asia, says, “We want to help agents to grow their business by showcasing the diversity of Europe and the opportunities around it. We’re delighted to launch our Insider Sessions and in 2018, it’s time to travel to Europe with Trafalgar and live The Good Life. Agents who participate in these sessions will be eligible to win a grand prize of a nine-day ‘Spanish Experience’ holiday sponsored by Trafalgar. There will be two grand prizes given away – one for each city.”

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Israel records 31% increase in Indian arrivals

Indian tourist arrivals to Israel have increased by 31 per cent from January to December, 2017 with around 60,000 Indian tourists visiting the country last year. This marks a growth of 48 per cent in the last two years, according to statistics released by Israel Ministry of Tourism (IMOT). Hassan Madah, Director, Israel Ministry of Tourism India & Philippines said, “2017 has been outstanding and by far the best year for Israel tourism in India and worldwide. By October, 2017 we already saw 49,000 Indians arrive in Israel, breaking previous records, and we were positive to close the year with 60,000 travellers to Israel from India. With over 20 million outbound tourists a year, India has been an important market for us. Introducing initiatives, including easing of the visa process and with airlines in India and Israel expressing interest to increase connectivity between the countries, I am confident that this growth will help us achieve 1 lakh Indian arrivals in 2018.”

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Actor Ranveer Singh drives tourism growth in Switzerland

Actor Ranveer Singh as Switzerland’s ambassador in India, has managed to drive a 25 per cent growth rate in overnights in the Alpine nation. Martin Nydegger, the newly appointed CEO of Switzerland Tourism, says, “We couldn’t be luckier to have Ranveer Singh as our country ambassador. He has really boosted the image of Switzerland in terms of tourism to make it younger, fresher, exciting and active. This is exactly how we want to position Switzerland in future to place it as the most desirable outdoor destination and he is helping us in doing just that.” “We are very happy to extend and continue with Ranveer Singh in 2018 and we are very much looking forward to that. We would always welcome all the production companies, stars and all the whole of Bollywood industry to continue shooting in Switzerland,” Nydegger added.    

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South Australia witnesses 18% rise in Indian visitors

The International Visitor Survey results released by Tourism Research Australia for the year ended September 2017, indicate an 18 per cent rise in Indians travelling to South Australia in comparison to the year ended September 2016. This makes India the eighth largest source market for the state and the third highest in terms of growth in arrivals during the year. In addition to this, spend by Indians visiting South Australia registered a substantial increase amounting to AUD$37mn, a jump by 33 per cent compared to last year. Commenting on the results, Dana Urmonas, Regional Director (India & Southeast Asia), SATC said, “The double-digit growth in arrivals and spend over the last year indicate that South Australia is steadily becoming a favoured destination among Indian travellers. We are extremely pleased that our trade and consumer programmes are yielding positive results and we are confident we will see sustained growth over the next few years as well.” In 2018, the SATC will focus on attracting honeymooners, families and independent travellers, especially cricket lovers, between the age of 25-45 years in the primary markets of Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai.

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Actor Parineeti Chopra promotes Australia through her holiday videos

Parineeti Chopra, Bollywood actress and ‘Friend of Australia’, released a series of videos that encapsulate her recent holiday experiences in the Australian states of Queensland and Northern Territory. As an advocacy campaign for Australian holidays, the videos will be promoted on media platforms to influence her followers and motivate potential travellers seeking an idyllic holiday destination. The actress has sung the background score with lyrics for the video showcasing Queensland. The videos feature a spectacular montage of iconic Aussie experiences. In the films, Parineeti can be seen cuddling a koala, learning to surf at the Gold Coast, getting a taste of Australia’s freshest produce, enjoying a bird’s eye view of Surfers Paradise on the Skypoint climb, spotting whales, watching the sunset over the Red Centre in Uluru and standing amidst Brunce Munro’s s beautiful art installation. Commenting on the videos, Chopra said, “I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Australia and the videos reflect every bit of fun I had there. From immersing in the aboriginal culture at Uluru to the fun and frolic in Queensland, I was fortunate to have an enriching experience of two completely different sides of the country.”

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India in top five list of visitors to Thailand

India ranks in top five list of highest number of visitors to Thailand after China, Malaysia, Korea and Laos. In 2017, over 1.4 million Indians travelled to Thailand which is over 18 per cent increase as compared to last year. Thailand welcomed over 35.3 million international visitors in 2017 and earned 1.82 trillion baht in tourism revenue. The precise number of overseas tourists visiting Thailand in 2017 was 35,381,210; showing an increase of 8.77 per cent over 2016. Soraya Homchuen, Director, Tourism Authority of Thailand, Mumbai said, “TAT is initiating many unique activities and projects this year with a focus on promoting women, family and first-time traveller segments for the Indian market.” Santi Chudintra, Deputy Governor for International Marketing (Asia and the South Pacific) said, “Our new campaign ‘Open to the New Shades of Thailand’ aims to give more attention to unique local experiences and inclusive tourism, reflecting Thainess and Thai people’s warmth in welcoming visitors. The new campaign ‘Amazing Thailand Tourism Year 2018’ has been launched to support the government’s national tourism development plan, ensuring that Thailand remains a preferred destination.”  

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UK encourages Indian visitors to use post-dated visa

The UK has launched their annual ‘Beat the Peak’ campaign to encourage Indian visitors to make the most of UKVI’s post-dated visa offer, which allows travellers to apply three months in advance and date their visa for when they travel. Visa applicants can benefit from quieter Visa Application Centres and more available appointment slots outside of the peak period. The post-dated service allows Indian visitors to the UK to start their visa on their intended travel date. For example, those planning to travel in April can apply for their visas in January, whilst keeping the full six month validity for when they intend to travel. Launched by Dominic Asquith KCMG, British High Commissioner to India, the 2018 ‘Beat the Peak’ campaign will include a range of activities led by the UK High Commission that aim to engage with the Indian tourist market and encourage them to visit Britain and apply early for their visa to do so. Asquith KCMG, said, “In the year ending September 2017, over half a million visas were issued to Indian nationals and visit visas alone were up by 11 per cent year-on-year. Indians can now expect a quicker visa process if they apply up to three months early and beat the summer peak in April and May.”  

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Penang conducts four-city sales mission

The Penang Convention & Exhibition Bureau (PCEB) started its Penang Sales Mission to India with an objective to promote Penang as the preferred destination for corporate and association meetings, incentives and leisure travel. Led by Ashwin Gunasekeran, Chief Executive Officer, PCEB, the mission is supported by a Penang delegation of 17 partners, including the state bureau for leisure travel – Penang Global Tourism, hotels, destination management companies, event experts and PCEB’s official airline partner, Malaysia Airlines. “India is one of the top five markets for business events in Penang, and over the past year, we have received encouraging interest from event planners and conference organisers. India is the sixth highest generator of tourists to Malaysia. This mission is joined by some of Penang’s finest offerings in the hospitality, travel and events sectors, and will showcase the best of what Penang can offer to the Indian market.”  said Ashwin Gunasekeran, CEO, PCEB. The mission kicked off in Kolkata on January 17, 2018, moving on to New Delhi on January 19, Mumbai on January 22 and Bengaluru on January 24.

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Malaysia targets 800,000 Indians by year end

Having received as many as 459,000 Indian visitors during January-October in 2017, Malaysia tourism board is targeting to receive 800,000 Indian visitors by the end of 2018, informs Mohamad Taib Ibrahim, Senior Deputy Director, Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board. “Indian families and the leisure segment of travel showed the highest growth in Malaysia. Since last year, we have restructured our marketing approach by way of partnerships with big players in the Indian market for joint promotion of Malaysia. Partnering with Akquasun Group for their roadshows is the first promotional activity for the trade in 2018; we will continue these efforts with other key players as well,” said Ibrahim. While the Genting Island is scheduled to open for Indian visitors sometime this year, the tourism board has introduced two new products—Desaru Coast and Forest City while aggressively promoting Legoland.

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