Tag Archives: ‎Vice President

Philippine Airlines appoints Bird Group as GSA in India

Philippine Airlines (PAL) has appointed Bird Travels, the Airline Management Services arm of Bird Group as its local representative in India. The association marks the airline’s latest step in developing its sales distribution network within the Indian market. The appointment of Bird Travels is part of the intensive preparations undertaken by Philippine Airlines to realise its firm plans to commence operations to India by winter 2018. Reinforcing the airline’s growing confidence in the market, Bird Travels is responsible for all the airline’s sales, marketing and ticketing activities in India through its centrally located headquarters in New Delhi. “India’s tourism industry is expanding rapidly and we’re already seeing a steady flow of leisure and business travellers flying between India and Philippines. Bird Group is a veteran in air travel management and we are challenging them to capitalise on their strength and capabilities to help launch our upcoming flights to New Delhi and Mumbai,” said Ryan Uy, Vice President – Sales, Philippine Airlines. “Armed with our extensive local knowledge and experienced team, Bird Travels is well-equipped and committed to promote the airline’s presence in the country,” said Vijay Bhatia, President, Bird Group. PAL’s planned services from New Delhi and Mumbai to Manila will enable India-based travellers to easily access over 31 destinations in the Philippines, out of PAL’s hubs in Manila, Clark, Cebu and Davao.

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Tamarind Global expands its base of operations to Dubai

Tamarind Global has gone international by expanding its presence to Dubai, a huge source market for Indian weddings and events. The company already has a presence in Dubai for its tours vertical. It will now offer a bouquet of event and wedding services to support its domestic and international operations from the Dubai office. Weddings and events will be supported by destination selection, planning and budgeting, guest list and vendor management, hospitality, travel and logistics, décor, F&B, entertainment and fashion consultations for the bride and groom wear. Apart from this, MiCE events will also be supported. A team of two will start the base of operations at the Dubai office. Kunal Rai, Vice President – Events and Weddings, will head the Dubai vertical, “With the launch of our Dubai office, Tamarind now offers its services to a ‘global’ audience. We aim to lead the market by providing an all-inclusive bouquet of services to make each event unique, glamorous and memorable.” Elucidating on the reason for expanding to Dubai, he said, “With the progressive growth of the Middle East as a popular destination, Dubai is the best choice to set up a regional HQ. It will act as a start point that will drive maximum output to penetrate primarily the UAE and Middle East market.”  

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Travel Air Representations to distribute Intrepid Travel in India

Travel Air Representations, the B2B wholesale travel division of FCM Travel Solutions, has announced the launch of adventure travel brand, Intrepid Travel in India. It will distribute and promote Intrepid Travel products and services in India. Headquartered in Australia, Intrepid Travel has over 800 different itineraries across Europe, Asia, Africa, North & South America, the Middle East, Australia, and both the Arctic and Antarctica. Joseph K Jose, Vice President & Head – Wholesale, FCM Travel Solutions (India), said, “We are delighted to announce the launch of Intrepid Travel, yet another leading global travel brand, in India. The diverse offerings of Intrepid Travel have been well-received globally and will strengthen our endeavour to address unique requirements of India’s leisure traveller market. Through this collaboration, we aim to offer Intrepid Travel’s bouquet of travel products in the country while focusing on Tier -II and Tier-III markets.” On the partnership, Brett Mitchell, Regional Director – Asia Pacific, Intrepid Group, said “We look forward to working with Travel Air Representations to launch Intrepid Travel to the Indian market”.  Currently Travel Air Representations works with over 2100 agents (Business Partners) across 110 cities and towns in India, with a team of over 110 passionate and professional team members.”

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Travelport and Air France-KLM sign agreement

Travelport and Air France-KLM have signed an agreement for the distribution of content through Travelport’s platform. Air France-KLM and HOP! content on Travelport’s platform will include Travelport’s rich content, branded fares, fare families and multiple ancillaries. Travelport customers will continue to benefit from Travelport’s tools beyond booking capability that enable workflow automation, change management processes, multiple content integration, robotics for fulfilment and other vital services. This agreement also enables customers selected by Air France HOP! and KLM to access a private channel via Travelport through which they will receive content without the additional distribution surcharge levied by Air France-KLM starting April 1, 2018. Derek Sharp, Senior Vice President and Managing Director – Air Commerce, Travelport, says, “This agreement is an extension of a long-term relationship which has delivered greater choice to Air France KLM’s customers. We look forward to a continuing productive partnership as we deploy new technology with the airline.” Emmanuelle Gailland, Vice President – Distribution, Air France-KLM, says, “Travelport has been a great partner throughout our private channel engagement as a transition towards NDC. Both Air France KLM and Travelport will work together to bring NDC content of new fares, products, services and rich media in the marketplace.”

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Exciting times for MiCE in India and global market: AccorHotels Showcase 2018

One of the key takeaways from the AccorHotels Showcase 2018 was that MiCE is on the rise globally – with multiple events being held internationally, and also in India which is increasingly becoming a chosen destination for MiCE. Furthermore, with globalisation and Indian corporates opening offices around the world, the hospitality industry has seen traction for corporate travel both inbound and outbound. The AccorHotels Showcase 2018 witnessed participation from 35 hotels and resorts from the global network along with 22 hotels from India. The event was the ideal platform to discuss how to work together to benefit from the burgeoning travel market. The delegates were representing India’s topmost travel agents, wholesalers, corporate clients, tourism partners and MiCE organisers in attendance. Arif Patel, Vice President – Sales, Marketing, Distribution & Loyalty, AccorHotels said, “By 2020, Indian outbound travel is estimated to reach 48 million and foreign tourist arrivals is forecasted to cross the 10 million mark. This annual AccorHotels Showcase gives an opportunity for our attendees to engage with AccorHotels’ representatives from around the world to see how best we can work together given the opportunities in the market.” The daylong event in Mumbai on March 21 and Delhi on March 23 was packed with networking sessions where customers discovered the group’s newest offerings and met with hotel representatives from across the region.

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Hyatt hopes to add 1,400 keys to portfolio in India by 2019

Hyatt Hotels and Resorts aims to add approximately 1,400 more keys to its current portfolio of over 7,000 rooms by next year, reveals Harleen Mehta, Vice President, Sales Operations – India, Hyatt Hotels and Resorts. She says, “The Hyatt Place Hyderabad-Banjara Hills was launched in December 2017 that will be followed by our Grand Hyatt Kochi Bolgatty which is slated to open in April 2018. It will offer 265 luxurious guestrooms including 38 suites and four villas, and will mark our foray into the Kerala market. The two upcoming Hyatt Place hotels – Hyatt Place Bangalore Airport-Urbana is scheduled to open this year and Hyatt Place Jaipur is expected to open doors next year. These two hotels will add approximately 400 more rooms to our portfolio. Hyatt Regency McLeod Ganj that is set to open in 2018 in the Himalayas will establish us as the only licensed international hospitality chain allowed to build an eco-friendly hotel in the forests there. Apart from this, we are looking to expand in the market with our upcoming properties in Gurgaon and Agra.” Currently, Hyatt’s India portfolio includes 28 hotels across 17 key destinations in the country.

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Nijhawan Group appointed as Kempinski Hotels’ GSO in India

Kempinski Hotels has partnered with the Nijhawan Group led by MD Ankush Nijhawan, one of the oldest tourism groups with offices in over 40 cities throughout India. Kempinski has opened three Global Sales Offices in India, respectively in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bangalore. Kempinski Hotels recently conducted an impressive roadshow throughout the country in February, in which 12 representatives and General Managers from various hotels were able to re-introduce Kempinski to around 300 trade partners. “Several of our hotels are already enjoying Indian business and have hosted multi-million dollar weddings. Successful Kempinski top destinations dealing with India so far are Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Bangkok and Venice,” says Theo Ocks, Vice President—Global Sales, Kempinski Hotels.

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Hahn Air expands benefits for travel agency partners

Hahn Air announced the evolution of its portfolio of services for partners worldwide. It launched additional benefits for registered travel agents, including VIP flights aboard the airline’s aircraft and discounts on courses provided by the Hahn Air Business School. With its global infrastructure of connections to all major Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and memberships in almost all Billing and Settlement Plans (BSPs), Hahn Air enables more than 100,000 travel agents worldwide to issue the services of over 350 air, rail and shuttle partners on its HR-169 ticket. Following a one-time registration on Hahn Air’s corporate website, travel agents from over 190 markets can take advantage of the exclusive list of services. The services have now been extended to include a VIP-journey from Dusseldorf to Luxembourg aboard one of Hahn Air Lines bizjet aircrafts at 50 per cent of the official Product Experience Programme (PEP) rate. “The travel agent community is the reason for our business and we are constantly trying to create new and exciting ways to foster even stronger relationships between us. We appreciate their growing interest in our portfolio and value their trust in our ticketing solutions”, says Kimberley Long, Vice President—Sales and Agency Distribution, Hahn Air.

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Sunil R. Kumar re-elected as UFTAA President

The new Universal Federation of Travel Agents Association (UFTAA) board was elected at its AGM held during the UFTAA Congress held in Tel Aviv. The new UFTAA board now included Sunil R. Kumar from India as the new president, Yossef Fatael from Israel as the Vice President, S.G. Kaka from Kenya as the Vice President – Finance, and Cetin Gurcun from Turkey as the Vice President – Tourism. Sunil R. Kumar has been re-elected as the President of UFTAA for the third time starting from 2015. Kumar says, “It is delightful to be assigned with the responsibility to lead the most prestigious UFTAA once again. The association has a glorious past and a roaring future in the world of global networking that is extremely important in our fast evolving industry. UFTAA’s tourism initiatives and getting more parts of the world into Active UFTAA is what does matter for the success of UFTAA. I attribute this success to TAAI and India, for our respect globally is well acknowledged and accepted. It also implies that we have greater responsibility of our shoulders and this will certainly be delivered well. Congratulations everyone one in the Indian Industry for this global lead opportunity, which is historic to have been re-elected.” The Board of Directors meeting of UFTAA was held on February 6, 2018, at Tel Aviv. During the Congress, UFTAA welcomed some prominent regions of the world who joined UFTAA. This includes COTAL, the federation of travel & tourism associations of 25 countries of Latin America and China Association of Travel Services (CATS) that joined UFTAA as its Association Member.

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Cleartrip launches ‘Shortlist’ to enhance hotel selection experience

Cleartrip has announced the launch of Shortlist feature to facilitate a more seamless, hassle-free booking experience for its users. Shortlists can be shared with other users to enhance planning amongst groups travelling together. Ankit Rastogi, Vice President, Hotels Cleartrip, says, “Constant improvement and evolution focused on improving the travel process make Cleartrip the platform of choice for millions of users. We’ve made it simpler, quicker and more collaborative an experience when you book hotels with Cleartrip. With Shortlist, we hope to drive 25% higher conversion to begin with and optimise it even further along the way. We will be tracking engagement and conversion from this feature to continue improving it.” The purpose of the feature is to improve how user’s research and plan for a trip by allowing them the flexibility to select amongst thousands of available hotels at their convenience, without having to start from scratch every time they resume their search. Users can, moreover, compare the location of shortlisted properties and the price on a map of the area, adding new insights to help them make their choice.

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