Tag Archives: ‎Vice President

FHRAI requests MOT’s urgent intervention in OTAs v/s hotels dispute

The Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) has reached out to the Ministry of Tourism (MoT) regarding the hotel industry’s ongoing dispute with Goibibo, MakeMyTrip and OYO requesting its urgent intervention for redressal of hoteliers’ grievances. After a month of failed attempts to amicably resolve issues with the Online Travel Aggregators (OTAs), the apex hospitality body has written to KJ Alphons, Union Minister of State (I/C) Tourism, outlining the major issues of concern to the industry because of the OTAs’ unfair and arbitrary business practices. A number of FHRAI’s members are experiencing hardships due to the OTAs’ business ethics which are exploitative, unethical and divisive, leading to predatory pricing and other market distortions. The letter to the Ministry states that the hotel industry in the country is going through a very challenging phase which is threatening the livelihood, business, investments and entrepreneurial initiative and spirits of the hospitality industry, and thereby eroding the viability of the sector. “The hotel industry, especially the budget and mid-market hotel segment is reeling under the adverse business tactics of the OTAs. The OTAs’ malpractices are affecting the hoteliers’ livelihood and business. These hoteliers who are part of the local and city hotel Associations across the country have approached FHRAI seeking consultation and support, and are in solidarity with the Federation. The FHRAI has tried to resolve the issue directly with the OTAs, however instead its CEO has chosen to dismiss FHRAI’s role in the matter. It leaves us with no choice but to ask for the Government to step in and create a norm for the OTAs just as the Commerce Ministry has done for the e-tailers recently,” says Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, …

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Bloom hotels now in Janpath, New Delhi; targets 100 hotels by 2020

Bloom Hotels has opened its latest property in the heart of Delhi at Janpath with bloomrooms @ Janpath. The rapid execution is part of the group’s growth plan to build 100 hotels by 2020 and also signals the launch of a comprehensive pan India roll-out. With properties in Delhi, Gurugram, Bengaluru and Goa, Bloom Hotels is now expanding across India with 50 hotels to be signed in Tier-II markets over the next few months. Speaking on the occasion at the launch of the hotel, Tom Welbury, Vice President Strategy, Bloom Hotel Group, says, “We are very positive about the success of the hotel. In this location, there isn’t any mid-scale hotel that offers quality. We are offering that to our customers and we will be catering both to the corporates and leisure guests. We have have set a new record by building and launching the entire property in less than 100 days. With this kind of pace and efficiency, I am sure we will meet our target.”

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FHRAI puts MakeMyTrip and Goibibo on notice to protect the interest of stakeholders

In response to grievances expressed by its members, the Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (FHRAI) has put Online Travel Aggregators (OTA), MakeMyTrip and Goibibo on notice. A number of its members had brought to the association’s notice that the OTAs’ business practices which were exploitative, unethical and divisive led to predatory pricing and other market distortions that had the potential to harm both hoteliers and consumers in the long term. FHRAI has written a letter to the OTAs outlining the most critical concerns of the hotel industry which includes the issue of distortion of market price, demand for exorbitant commissions and hosting of illegal and unlicensed bed and breakfast accommodations. “One of the biggest concerns is that after securing discounted rates from a hotel, the OTAs further discount it on their online platforms without the hotel’s consent. This damages the hotel’s reputation, and also simultaneously distorts the market scenario. Ironically, the OTAs have a clause in their agreement that forbids hotels from discounting their own rates but are themselves free to do so. This disparity is not just unfair but is clearly intentional and is done with the objective of market cannibalisation,” says Gurbaxish Singh Kohli, Vice President – FHRAI & President – Hotel and Restaurant Association of Western India (HRAWI). Hotels have alleged that the OTAs charge commission that range anywhere between 18 and 40 per cent. The exorbitant commissions have been adversely impacting revenues, business and the livelihood of hoteliers. The Federation has written to MMT and Goibibo in the hope that they will understand the ground level situation of hotels. However, based on the previous experience of hoteliers whose attempts at negotiations were neglected …

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Sabre hosts ‘Airline Leaders’ Forum’ in Mumbai

Sabre Corporation recently hosted the first-ever ‘Airline Leaders’ Forum’ in Mumbai to create a unique forum for airlines, travel agents and travel management companies from across the country to delve into industry best practices regarding merchandising, distribution and fulfilment that will enable a successful evolution towards the future of travel. Sabre continues to bolster its leadership position in the India travel marketplace. In addition to providing a platform that facilitates knowledge transfer between industry members, Sabre recently announced the renewal of a long-term, full content distribution agreement with Jet Airways. Sabre also has a long-standing relationship with Air India, with whom it holds a full content distribution agreement for both India and international points of sale. “India has the potential to achieve some of the fastest growth of any aviation market in the world. Sabre plays a leading role in the transformation of India’s aviation industry by enabling companies to adopt cutting-edge technology solutions that provide a significant market advantage,” said Rakesh Narayanan, Vice President, Air Line of Business, Sabre Travel Network Asia Pacific. “Through our strategic partnerships and thanks to our leading global travel marketplace, which connects over 425,000 agents to global airline content, Sabre contributes to the success of its customers on an international scale,” he added.

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Agents visit Silver Muse cruise ship docked in Mumbai

Around 10 top travel agents and tour operators visited the ultra-luxury cruise ship Silver Muse that had docked in Mumbai and interacted with Daniel Krupp, Vice President, Silversea, onboard the liner over lunch. They also went around the ship for an inspection after a product presentation to get a first-hand feel of the exclusive experience. The ship departed from Muscat on October 23 and docked in Mumbai on October 26. It will then cruise to Kochi on October 28, going on to Colombo, Rangoon, Phuket, Pulau, Klang and finally arriving in Singapore on November 9. The product is currently promoted in India mainly by Cox & Kings and a couple of other agents.

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InterGlobe Air Transport appointed as exclusive GSA in India for Hertz

InterGlobe Air Transport (IGAT) has been appointed as the exclusive General Sales Agent (GSA) in India by car rental company, Hertz. The exclusive partnership was formed following a year of successful collaboration in India between the two companies. The appointment will be effective immediately and will cover all of Hertz’s brands including Dollar, Thrifty, ACE and Firefly for outbound rentals. Commenting on the partnership, Siddhanta Sharma, President and CEO, InterGlobe Air Transport, said, “Hertz’s global expertise and modern fleet, coupled with our strong footprint across the Indian market will help us pave substantial inroads with both corporate and leisure holiday travellers. Our discerning network in India very much welcomes our ongoing collaboration with a renowned, truly global player such as Hertz.” Eoin MacNeill, Vice President, Hertz Asia Pacific, added, “IGAT has 29 years of experience in the Indian travel industry and is perfectly placed to grow Hertz’s presence by providing consumers with mobility solutions that suit their needs, regardless of if they’re travelling for business or leisure.” According to Research and Markets, India outbound visitors will grow 10 per cent CAGR by 2022, thus increasing the demand for Hertz’s services. IGAT has 12 offices across the country, as well as 80 sales people to help cater to this segment effectively.

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Lords Hotels & Resorts signs new property in Udaipur

Lords Hotels & Resorts has announced the launch of its new property at Govardhan Vilas in Udaipur. To be launched as Lords Inn, Udaipur the 41-room property is designed for travellers seeking hassle-free and contemporary experience. Travellers can easily commute from the nearest Maharana Pratap Airport to the hotel as it is located in heart of city and easily approachable from all locations. Udaipur Railway Station is just 3 kms from the hotel. Pushpendra Bansal, COO, Lords Hotels and Resorts said, “This tie-up will further strengthen our presence in Rajasthan. We endeavour to offer unmatched services and accommodation at very competitive prices.” Rishi Puri, Vice President, Lords Hotels and Resorts further added, “Lords Inn, Udaipur will differ in a way that it will offer tourists a more relaxed atmosphere.” Other than offering luxurious rooms and suites, Lords Inn, Udaipur will also offer recreational facilities like swimming pool, spa and gym. While the hotel will host all modern amenities and full-services to its guests, the room tariffs will be maintained at budget-friendly prices. Guests will also be able to enjoy exquisite dining options at its multi-cuisine restaurant – Blue Coriander.

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IHG debuts in Udaipur with Holiday Inn Udaipur Urban Square

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has signed a management agreement with Bhumika Enterprises for Holiday Inn Udaipur Urban Square. The 195-room hotel will be the first Holiday Inn hotel in the city and is expected to be operational by 2022. Boasting of an excellent location, Holiday Inn Udaipur Urban Square will be an integral part of the upcoming ‘Urban Square’, an integrated hospitality, retail and family entertainment destination spread over 1.8 million square feet. Sudeep Jain, Vice President—Development, South West Asia, IHG said, “We are delighted to partner with Bhumika Group to mark IHG’s debut in Udaipur, under the Holiday Inn banner. Urban Square is set to develop as a landmark destination for hospitality, retail and family entertainment in Udaipur and we are pleased to be a part of this prestigious development. The Holiday Inn brand family is our growth driver in the midscale hotel segment in India, and we have accelerated our expansion this year with a number of signings across the country.” Uddhav Poddar, Managing Director, Bhumika Group, said, “IHG is a leading hospitality player, globally and we are very pleased to partner with the company to launch Holiday Inn Udaipur Urban Square. We are confident that the Holiday Inn brand will further enhance the bouquet of services that the Urban Square has to offer to travellers.’’  

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Piyush Goyal launches ‘Rail Heritage Digitisation Project’ to showcase India’s rail heritage

Union Minister of Railways and Coal, Piyush Goyal has launched ‘Rail Heritage Digitisation Project’ of Indian Railways in collaboration with Google Arts & Culture through video conferencing. The project is a landmark effort to showcase the country’s rail heritage to national and international audience in an online story-telling platform. Ashwani Lohani, Chairman, Railway Board; Rajan Anandan, Vice President—South East Asia and India, Google; Amit Sood, Director, Google Cultural Institute, among other dignitaries and UNESCO representatives were among those present on the occasion. Goyal said, “As a 165 year old organisation, the Railways has a lot of material which we need to preserve and leave behind for posterity. Mumbai has a special place in the Railways, being the first railway line to be set up in India. We will be setting up 22 digital screens across different locations in India for showcasing this historic project. This partnership between the Railways and Google also has the dimension of the Wi-Fi, which we have proliferated to over 400 stations in India.” Lohani said that collaboration with Google Art & Culture has enabled Indian Railways to digitise National Rail Museum, Rewari Steam Centre, three World Heritage Railways, CSMT Mumbai building and other prominent aspects of country’s rail heritage.

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IT&CMA and CTW Asia-Pacific 2018 welcomes 3000 delegates

The 26th IT&CM Asia and 21st CTW Asia-Pacific kicked off in Bangkok, Thailand and welcomed some 3,000 delegates, including over 500 hosted buyers and media, from more than 50 territories and countries. Over 50 industry thought-leaders from government bodies, related associations, corporate organisations and industry professions delivered knowledge sessions. The main keynote presented by Martin Nydegger, CEO, Switzerland Tourism; Oscar Cerezales, COO, MCI Asia-Pacific; Nichapa Yoswee, Senior Vice President – Business, Thailand Convention & Exhibition Bureau (TCEB); and Daniel Chua, Vice President – Meetings & Incentives, Singapore Associations of Conventions and Exhibition Organisers (SACEOS), set the tone towards the transformation of audience engagement as the demand to stand out and being top-of-mind becomes more competitive. TCEB hosted the Official Opening Ceremony & Welcome Reception themed ‘Thailand Limited’ that rounded off Day 1 of activities at the GMM Live House at CentralWorld, featuring a colourful night of uniquely Thai entertainment, local cuisine and hospitality.  

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