Category Archives: NTO (National Tourist Offices)

Philippines records 18% growth in Indian arrivals

The Philippines recorded a growth of 18 per cent in visitor arrivals from India in 2017, according to a report by Centre for Aviation and Department of Tourism (DOT), Philippines. India is the 12th largest source market for the Philippines, based on 2017 visitor data. The other top 12 source markets all have nonstop services – South Korea, China, the US, Japan, Australia, Taiwan, Canada, the UK, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong. There were 107,000 Indian visitors to the Philippines in 2017 and only 52,000 in 2013 (the year PAL suspended service to Delhi.). Growth has been consistently in the high double digits, including 18 per cent in 2017, 21 per cent in 2016 and 22 per cent in 2015.

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Nepal Sales Mission 2019 kicks off in eight Indian cities

Nepal Sales Mission 2019, an eight-city event, is underway and will run up till February 1, 2019, in Lucknow, Agra, Jaipur, Bhopal, Indore, Kochi, Coimbatore and Madurai. The Mission aims to bring all travel trade partners together to update them about Destination Nepal, educate them on what the country has to offer that will be of great interest to their Indian clientele and allow them to explore opportunities that lie within. Nepal recorded a growth of 25.1 per cent in visitor arrivals from India in 2017, attaining a remarkable surge over the previous year. In Lucknow, the Mission will be held at Hyatt Regency on January 10. It will then proceed to Agra on January 12 to be held at the Clarks Shiraz hotel, followed by Jaipur on January 14 at Hotel Crowne Plaza. Marriott Hotels in Bhopal, Indore and Kochi will host the Sales Mission on January 21, 22 and 28, respectively. It will proceed to Coimbatore on January 30 to be held at Le Méridien Hotel and conclude in Madurai on February 1 at the Poppys Hotel. The Nepalese delegation is looking forward to interacting with over 80 agents from each of the eight cities, where participants include destination specialists, fence sitters, and other key trade partners. Nepal Sales Mission 2019 will witness participation from several private players from Nepal, including Apoorva Tours & Travels, Kathmandu Holiday Tours & Travels, Fishtail Tours & Travels, Heritage Tours & Travels and Outdoor Expeditions.  

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Azerbaijan Tourism Board appoints Blue Square Consultants as India representative

Blue Square Consultants has been appointed as the representative for Azerbaijan Tourism Board (ATB) in India. It will be responsible to build and develop strong relations with key tourism and hospitality entities and trade partners to grow and strengthen the tourism potential of the destination in the Indian market. Confirming the appointment, Sevinj Zeynalli, International Market Management Director, Azerbaijan Tourism Board, said, “India being an important outbound market, we’re pleased to partner with a highly reputed organisation like Blue Square Consultants that has a strong foothold across different cities in India. Owing to their successful track record, we are confident that their expertise will help us gain greater visibility and we look forward to welcoming more Indians on their holiday to Azerbaijan”. Lubaina Sheerazi, COO, Blue Square Consultants, stated, “We are delighted to represent the magnificent country of Azerbaijan and drive it as a preferred leisure destination for Indian travellers. The strategy is to tap into the growing outbound market and change perceptions to showcase the tourism prospects of Azerbaijan. We have the requisite knowledge and an excellent track record in managing various tourism boards and the recent appointment is a reaffirmation of our proficiency in the travel sector”.

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Vietnam welcomes Indian travellers to explore its cultural treasures through Delhi roadshow

In a bid to lure Indian tourists, the Embassy of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in association with Om Tourism organised a roadshow in Delhi on the theme ‘Vietnam- A charming destination for Indian tourists’. HE Pham Sanh Chau, Ambassador of Vietnam to India, Nepal & Bhutan, revealed that around 110,000 Indian tourists travelled to Vietnam in 2017. He affirmed that the number is estimated to increase in the coming years. “Vietnam is home to eight UNESCO world heritages, well preserved historic relics and beautiful beaches. Indian travellers can find the affulence of Indian culture in Vietnam through Hindu temples in Ho Chi Minh or at the My Son sanctuary with an abundance of Indian restaurants,” he added. The event proceeded with a product presentation by the five Vietnamese partners namely, Victoria Tour, Hello Asia Travel, Go Indo China Tours, Melia Hotels International and Orchid Global. The event witnessed an active participation from several trade partners and tour operators around the city.  

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Cox & Kings India promotes Qatar as its new preferred destination

Cox & Kings India is now promoting Qatar as the group’s new preferred destination. The marketing and promotion campaign comes as part of a strategic partnership with Qatar National Tourism Council (QNTC) aimed at boosting the destination’s profile to attract luxury, business and independent travellers to visit Qatar. Rashed AlQurese, Chief Marketing and Promotion Officer, QNTC, commented, “We are pleased to be partnering with Cox & Kings group for the destination’s first-ever integrated campaign in India. Qatar is an easily accessible destination within a few hours from most Indian cities making it an attractive destination for travellers looking for short city getaways or a convenient stopover when heading further West.” In Qatar, Cox & Kings group is offering visits to tourism hotspots and activities that explore both the traditional and contemporary sides of the destination. Karan Anand, Head-Relationships, Cox & Kings said, “Qatar is an easily accessible destination within a few hours from most Indian cities. Every week, there are 176 flights connecting Indian cities to Doha offered by Qatar Airways as well as IndiGo, Jet Airways and Air India Express. Since January this year, Qatar has welcomed more than 335,922 Indian visitors till October, representing a 25 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.” Every week, there are 176 flights connecting Indian cities to Doha offered by Qatar Airways as well as Indigo, Jet Airways and Air India Express. Since January this year, Qatar has welcomed more than 335,922 Indian visitors till October, representing a 25 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.

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Singapore observes robust tourist traffic from South India

Chennai and Bengaluru have been among the top source cities from South India for visitor arrivals from India to Singapore in 2017. Cities like Coimbatore, Trichy, Hyderabad and Kochi registered growth in traveller numbers to the city. The factors contributing to the strong visitorship numbers are the short three-plus hours’ travel time, increased direct flight connectivity of nine cities to the city and quick weekend holidays. In January 2018, the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) organised a consumer-centric mall activity in Bengaluru, featuring the various travel offerings one can indulge in while in Singapore. In the middle of the year, it conducted, together with key trade partners from Singapore, an extensive travel trade roadshow series across Trichy, Coimbatore, Kochi and Visakhapatnam.

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Indian tourist arrivals to Greece increases by 119% in September 2018

As per the statistics released by Greece National Tourist Office (GNTO) and Athens International Airport, 38,046 Indian tourists visited Greece in the nine months vis-à-vis 17,376 Indian tourists during the same period in 2017, which is a whopping increase of 119 per cent. Speaking about the positive growth, Konstantinos Tsegas, Secretary General, Greek National Tourism Organization said, “Greece as a destination has gained momentum over the years and we are glad to witness the rising interest of Indians for Greece as a popular holiday destination across the country. Our approach is to target the captive audience across various age groups simply by appealing to every kind of travel need. We have effectively leveraged diverse platforms, based on specific characteristics of the Indian market. The strategy is to also promote 365-day tourism in Greece and create awareness about lesser known cities of Greece like Thessaloniki, Xanthi or Kavala which have great geophysical, historical and cultural importance along with Athens. We are closely working with our partners in India for growth across segments like families, FITS (first time travelers segment), MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and events), destination weddings, honeymoon and films.” The beauty of Greece is a Unique Sales Proposition (USP), by any means. But what truly makes a difference is its people, the authenticity and simplicity of Greek touristic products in combination with an extremely rich historical background. In 2016, Greece National Tourist Office noticed 14.6 million arrivals in total and in 2017, 15.5 million, whereas, the growth percentage of arrivals from India has been around 9.7 per cent each year.

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Thailand launches special schemes and offers for Indian market

Geared up to capitalise on the upcoming festive season, Tourism Authority of Thailand has recently introduced some attractive scheme and offers to ensure maximum footfalls from India and other countries to Thailand. This year Thailand has already recorded 919,130 tourist arrivals from India a Y-O-Y increase of 13.24 per cent. Recently the government granted a visa-on-arrival fee waiver for tourists from 20 countries. From 15 November, 2018, to 13 January, 2019, citizens of Andora, Bulgaria, Bhutan, China including Taiwan, Cyprus, Ethiopia, Fiji, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Papua New Guinea, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan will be exempted from the 2,000 Baht visa-on-arrival fee for the purpose of touring in Thailand not more than 15 days. Tourism Authority of Thailand now launches Amazing Thailand Grand Sale ‘Passport Privilege’ campaign during the same period.” Tourism Authority of Thailand gives delightful experiences in shopping and using services for foreign tourists who come to Thailand during November 15, 2018 – January 15, 2019. The campaign will help tourists to increase buying power on a variety of products and services from leading service providers Furthermore tourist travelling to Thailand (arriving at Suvarnabhumi and Donmuang Airport) can now avail of E Visa on Arrival. The Nation Immigration Bureau acting commissioner Pol Maj-General Surachate Hakpal officially launched the e-Via on Arrival (E-VOA) system that is expected to cut visa processing time to as little as one minute. Surachate presided over a ceremony to launch the new system, which has been used on trial basis at Suvarnabhumi and Don Muang airports since November 15. The launch ceremony was held at Suvarnabhumi International Airport. The facility is available at Phuket International Airport since …

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13 Indian buyers participate at ‘Queensland on Stage India 2018’ in Gold Coast

A total of 13 Indian buyers including top travel companies from across India, Tourism Australia and Malaysia Airlines, marked their participation at ‘Queensland on Stage India 2018’ at Top Golf, Gold Coast held on November 20. Around 17 Queensland sellers exhibited their offerings at the event. Speaking on the occasion, Ryna Sequeira, Country Manager of Tourism and Events Queensland in India said, “Queensland witnessed a 17 per cent growth in June 2018 and welcomed around 78,000 Indian visitors. We have seen a strong year-on-year growth out of the market. We thank all the Indian buyers for their consistent business to Queensland and the sellers who believe and invest in the market.” The event provided participating operators the opportunity to meet with Indian agents to enable them to expand their product knowledge; look for new and exciting experiences and products; and to build on existing relationships.

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Dubai concludes 4-city roadshow in North India

Dubai Tourism Corporation and Marketing (DTCM) India recently conducted a four-city roadshow in North India. Represented by Nijhawan Group in India, DTCM held roadshows in Lucknow on November 12, in Jaipur on November 13, in Chandigarh on November 15, and finally concluding it in New Delhi on November 16. Khalid Al Awar, Manager–India & Pakistan, International Operations, led the delegation which consisted of partners including airlines, hotels and popular attractions in Dubai. Addressing the attendees at the Delhi roadshow, Al Awar thanked the travel agents and their support in making India the number one source market for tourism in Dubai.

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