Category Archives: NTO (National Tourist Offices)

Seychelles records 62% increase in Indian tourist arrivals

Seychelles records 62 per cent increase in tourist arrivals from India during January-July 2016, compared to the same period last year. This surge in the arrivals can be attributed to the India tourist office’s increasing focus on educating and hand holding the trade to better promote the destination, increase in Air Seychelles daily flights from four to five times a week, special efforts from the hotels and DMCs to tap the India market and increasing efforts to reach out to the customer through association with Bollywood and other avenues. Sherin Naiken, CEO, Seychelles Tourism Board, said, “We are thrilled with the way India market has responded to our efforts. We have seen a phenomenal increase in arrivals since we opened office three years ago. However, this is not the time to bask in the current successes and relax. As we enter the pre-honeymoon and festival season we will double our efforts to reach out to both travel trade and consumers. We are fortunate to have supportive partners like Air Seychelles, the DMCs and the hotels who walk with us hand in hand in going the extra mile to support the India travel trade. As a result, owing to its diversity, we have been able to position Seychelles as a destination which is meant for all – families, couples, small groups, celebrations and MICE.” New hotels have opened in the Seychelles in the past one year giving tourists more options. Carana Beach Hotel, the 40 chalet four-star property in North Mahe, opened its doors to guests in April 2016. It is the only resort in its category to boast of in-villa plunge-in pools. Dubai-based H Hotel and Resort Management Company opened …

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Mauritius on a 5-city roadshow

The Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority (MTPA) is currently on a five-city roadshow that started from Mumbai on Aug 22 and reached Ahmedabad on Aug 23. The delegation will then travel to New Delhi on August 25, Bengaluru on August 26 and finally concluding in Chennai on August 27. Leading a 30-member delegation from Mauritius was Kevin Ramakaloan, Director, Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority. Mumbai saw attendance from more than 170 agents and tour operators and about 15 wedding planners from India to meet the international sellers. Ramkaloan said, “The Indian market is extremely important for Mauritius. We have over the years seen an increase in the tourist numbers from India. But recently, as of last year, we have seen a 20 per cent increase, we hope to reach the 100,000 mark by 2017 with the help of MPTA India. Apart from honeymooners, we are targeting the MICE segment as well as cruise tourism. We currently see around 5,000 arrivals for MICE from India so we can easily double and even treble this number.” He added, “In 2015 Mauritius we had growth from 2014-15 of more than 11 per cent in the number of tourist arrivals. And close to eight to nine per cent in terms of tourist earnings. This year we would like to continue this growth and hence from 1.15 million tourists overall coming to Mauritius grew to 1.2 million. India represents 72,000 tourists per year. Last year we did a 20 per cent increase which brought us to 72,000 tourists from India. For the half from January to July this year, we did 12 per cent increase. Just in July we saw 43 per cent increase in arrivals. By 2017 we should …

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Thailand conducts 4-city roadshow

Tourism Authority of Thailand’s offices in Mumbai and Delhi are in the midst of a four-city roadshow. TAT Delhi began the roadshow with Raipur on August 18 and Bhubaneshwar (August 20) while TAT Mumbai will take the annual initiative to the travel trade in Hyderabad (August 22) and Pune (August 24). “We are taking the Thailand product beyond metros because we are also experiencing huge traffic and interest from these cities,” says Soraya Homchuen, director, TAT Mumbai office. “The focus of the roadshow will be new segments and new regions. In Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai and Kolkata we have already announced our focus on families, women-only holidays, bachelorette parties and luxury-seekers. We have already begun to see traction for new regions such as Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Hua Hin, Kanchanaburi, Rayong, Koh Samet, Koh Chang, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan,” adds Homchuen. The Amazing Thailand roadshow will see over a dozen suppliers visit all four cities. Sellers will be briefed on each city’s unique needs and way of doing business, along with demand-related information, trends and connectivity to ensure that they are on the same page as the travel trade who will attend the roadshow. “The focus of the roadshow will be new segments and new regions. In Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai and Kolkata we have already announced our focus on families, women-only holidays, bachelorette parties and luxury-seekers in a clear shift away from bachelor parties and budget holiday makers. Additionally we have showcased and begun to see traction for new regions all over Thailand such as Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai, Hua Hin, Kanchanaburi, Rayong, Koh Samet, Koh Chang, Koh Samui and Koh Phangan,” adds Homchuen. She and the team …

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Reunion Island appoints Representation World LLP for India representation

The Reunion Island Tourism Board (French Island in Indian Ocean) has announced the appointment of Representation World LLP as its representative office in India. Representation World LLP has been tasked to implement ongoing public relations and travel trade programs, to educate potential travellers on the destination’s unique attributes, thereby attracting a larger number of visitors to Reunion Island from India. Reunion Island aims to receive more Indian Tourist, with this Partnership with Representation World. “Reunion Island offering Activities for all segment of the travellers be it in Air – Paragliding, Heli Tours , On Land – Casino, Culture Tour, Lava Caves. In Water – Deep Sea Diving, Coral Tours, Surfing, Canyoning etc will surely be interest of Indian Traveller and 42% whole Island is Protected by UNESCO world heritage and only place to see Volcanic Eruption even by hiking. The Mars Surface resemblance will definitely attract Indian Visitors Said Mr. William TECHER Head of Marketing & Promotion INDIA. Vineet Gopal, Director, Representation World LLP added, “We are thrilled & honoured to represent the Reunion Tourism Board in India. The destination offering will definitely attract Indian Honeymooners, Family, Adventure Tourist, etc. Also the 15 Days Short Stay Visa simplification for Indian who wish to travel to Beautiful Reunion Island will also boost Tourism from India to Reunion Island.”

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Thailand VoA fee doubles to 2000THB from Sept

Indian tourists travelling to Thailand after September 27, 2016 will be charged 2000THB for Visa on Arrival (VoA), according to the Royal Thai Embassy, New Delhi. Tourists from Andorra, Bulgaria, Bhutan, China, Cyprus, Ethiopia, India, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Romania, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan are entitled to apply for VoA at 42 designated immigration checkpoints, which will allow tourists to stay in the country up to 15 days. The reason for the doubling of the VoA fee, which earlier stood at 1000THB, is to encourage tourists to apply for visas at Thai embassies or consular offices instead to enable thorough inspection and avoid security threats.

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Oman Tourism to conduct four-city roadshow in September

The Sultanate of Oman in association with the national airline Oman Air will conduct multi-city roadshow for the travel trade in India during September. The roadshow will commence on September 19 at Park Hyatt, Hyderabad; September 21 at The Oberoi, Kolkata; September 23 at Courtyard by Marriott, Ahmedabad; and conclude on September 26 at JW Marriott, Pune. Lubaina Sheerazi, India Representative – Ministry of Tourism, Oman says, “In 2015, we witnessed 17 per cent growth in Indian arrivals and in the first six months of 2016 too we have seen a positive growth. Encouraged by these figures and to penetrate better in tier II cities, we have decided to conduct the roadshow in Pune, Hyderabad and Ahmedabad. This year, we also identified Kolkata as a new market for Oman and will be conducting our first roadshow in the city. With this new addition, Oman has made presence in 8 Indian cities with Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Chennai being our main source markets.” Representatives from Ministry of Tourism, Oman along with a 15-member delegation representing hotels, DMCs and attractions in Oman will interact with key travel agents and tour operators from India. The roadshow will follow a pre-fixed meeting format whereby the invited travel agents will get adequate time to meet each delegate from Oman.

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Tourism Malaysia gets new director

Tourism Malaysia has appointed Sulaiman Suip as the new Director, North & East India operations. He will spearhead Tourism Malaysia’s marketing and publicity efforts from the New Delhi office to continue focus on bringing innovative products and promoting unique experiences to the Indian travel community. Previously, Suip held similar positions in Thailand and as deputy director at Tourism Malaysia’s Japan office. Speaking about his latest tenure in India, Suip said, “India is an important market for us as it contributes to the 6th largest arrivals to Malaysia. This year we have a target of welcoming one million Indian tourists.  The face of Indian travel is changing a lot and now it’s not just about status symbols or checking places off a list. Experiential holidays like spa holidays, art and culture trips, culinary vacations are catching the fancy of the Indian traveller. So there will be a conscious effort to promote this sector to the discerning traveller. Focus will also continue on promoting theme parks and the shopping segment, as Malaysia is seen as a perfect family destination with something for everyone in the family.” Suip was instrumental in setting up the Tourism Malaysia offices in New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai during his tenure as the Desk Officer overseeing promotion for South Asia market from 2000 until 2002. “Life seems to have come to a full circle with this new stint and I look forward to doing some good work in the eclectic Indian market,” Suip adds.

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Thailand steps up security

Following explosions in public areas in some provinces during August 11-12, 2016, Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha has instructed local authorities to step up security at key locations throughout Thailand as preventive measure and to ensure safety and security for business travelers and local residents. Meanwhile planned events and business events activities continue in Thailand as the nation celebrated the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Sirikit and Mother’s Day on 12 August, 2016. The Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB) has issued a statement advising international stakeholders that Thailand’s MICE industry continues to operate as normal, and all public and private sector stakeholders are working together to monitor the situation. It said that all hotels, venues and attractions are open and ready to welcome business travellers. Transportation links, major roads and airports continue to operate, including Bangkok’s BTS Skytrain and MRT services and both Don Muang and Suvarnabhumi International Airports. However, business travellers are advised to prepare adequate travelling time to avoid getting caught in traffic due to large movements of people during this long-weekend holiday period.

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Philippines successfully concludes 4-city roadshow in Mumbai

The Department of Tourism (DoT), Philippines received overwhelming response during its four-city roadshow for the travel trade. The roadshow that commenced from Kolkata on August 8, travelled to Chennai on August 9, Bengaluru on August 10 and finally to Mumbai on August 11. DOT Director, Verna Buensuceso, who was leading a delegation of 16 members from Philippines said, “We had more than 100 agents and operators in each city. Our growth shows that there is a lot of interest from the Indian market for Philippines. In 2015-16, the numbers grew by 22 per cent with a arrivals from India touching 75,000. This makes India the 13th biggest market for us globally.” SanJeet, Tourism Attaché, Philippines Tourism said, “The year 2016 is witnessing a strong start for Philippines Tourism, especially from the India market. We believe in putting our best efforts to make every roadshow more promising than the last one. The Indian travellers’ palate has become experimental and therefore, through our numerous trade initiatives, we envisage the influencers of the Indian travel market to sell the destination more effectively to the end consumers.” The program for the roadshow included presentations by officials of DoT Philippines, DMCs and hotels from the Philippines in addition to Q&A, detailed networking sessions and a special lucky draw for the participants.

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South Australia increases focus on India market

South Australian Tourism Commission (SATC) has identified India as a key growth market and has accorded it greater focus in terms of engagement with the trade and marketing efforts. Dana Urmonas, Regional Director, Southeast Asia & India, SATC, who was visiting multiple cities in India to meet the trade, says, “India is one of the world’s fastest growing outbound travel markets in the world and we at the SATC recognise the huge potential this market holds for us. The way Indians are now travelling and spending is changing significantly; they are looking for unique, memorable experiences. With wildlife experiences, pristine beaches, unspoilt nature and fantastic food and wine, travellers can get close to the real Australia in South Australia.” According to the recent International Visitor Survey Report March 2016, the number of Indian visitors to South Australia reached 10,000, with record spends of AU$18 million in the state. The 2015 India-Pakistan World Cup match hosted at the Adelaide Oval drove considerable awareness for the state and the SATC is looking to leverage the momentum built. The SATC is targeting affluent, global travellers in the age group of 25-55. The core target segments include leisure travellers, group travellers, honeymooners and families. To attract these travellers, SATC has been promoting three key destinations: Adelaide, Kangaroo Island and Barossa.

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