Tag Archives: Bahrain

K J Alphons presides over UNWTO’s Program and Budget Committee meeting

K J Alphons, Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Tourism, along with a delegation of senior officials is attending the 109th session of United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) Executive Council in Manama, Bahrain. During the opening day of the Executive Council meeting, Alphons chaired the ‘Programme and Budget Committee’ meeting of UNWTO. The three-day session of UNWTO Executive Council began on October 30, 2018. The Executive Council will discuss several topics on the agenda that are related to the development of global tourism sector. In his opening remarks, the Minister highlighted the role of tourism in socio-economic development through job creation, enterprise and environment development and foreign exchange earnings. As the chair of the committee, the Minister informed the session that for the first time, UNWTO had a surplus budget and most of the arrears due have been paid. India will be the chair of Programme and Budget Committee of UNWTO Executive Council till 2021. At the sidelines, the Minister also met Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary General, UNWTO, and discussed on involving UNWTO in developing tourism as a strong agent for the better future of the world and establishing the Global Public Private Partnerships.

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Jazeera Airways connects to India with daily flights to Hyderabad

Kuwait-based low cost airline, Jazeera Airways, inaugurated its daily flights to Hyderabad. Kochi, Mumbai and Ahmedabad will follow in early 2018 as the airline expands its network to serve its Indian sub-continent targeting the nearly 1 million Indian nationals residing in Kuwait. Flight J9 608 departed November 16 at 18:40 hours from Kuwait International Airport and landed in Hyderabad at 01:35 hours. The return flight J9 608 will depart Hyderabad at 02.20 hours and arrive in Kuwait at 05.10 hours. The new evening route has a weekly capacity of 4,000 seats and allows passengers to conveniently enjoy a full day at their destination. To mark the special occasion, all 165 passengers flying from Kuwait to Hyderabad received a gift box of traditional Kuwaiti sweets. Rohit Ramachandran, CEO, Jazeera Airways, said, ‘This is a proud moment for us marking the expansion of our network in to India. We are delighted to start with Hyderabad, a 400-year old city and a technology hub, bringing more choice to Indian travelers, connecting them to Kuwait, Riyadh, Jeddah, Bahrain and Dubai. In addition, we offer for religious travellers connections to Taif in KSA, Najaf (Iraq), Mashad (Iran) and Amman. He further commented, “This new service will address surging travel demands with low cost fares at convenient frequencies for leisure, business or religious travel. India is a financial and tourist powerhouse and we are eager to capitalize on the enormous opportunities ahead.” SGK Kishore, CEO, GHIAL, said, “We welcome Jazeera Airways to Hyderabad and we are very happy to note that they have chosen Hyderabad Airport as their first Indian destination. We are confident that this will further boost the tourism potential between India and various …

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Qatar Airways suspends flights to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain

In response to Saudi Arabia, UAE, Egypt and Bahrain breaking diplomatic ties with Qatar over alleged terror links, Qatar Airlines has suspended all flights to these nations until further notice. All customers booked on affected flights will be provided with alternative options, including the option of a full refund on any unused tickets and free rebooking to the nearest alternative Qatar Airways network destination. An official document from Qatar Airways addressed most of the concerns that travellers might be having currently. The document mentioned that in case passengers have booked tickets from Qatar on any other airline, the respective airline would rebook the tickets for these passengers. On the other hand, passengers holding confirmed and ticketed Qatar Airways tickets will be re-accommodated according to availability on other carriers at the time of re-issuance as per the IATA Regulations. However, there is not disruption in flights to Europe and US, and passengers on transit from Qatar also remain unaffected.

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Four countries sever diplomatic ties with Qatar

Tourism and air traffic in Qatar is likely to witness a significant dip following four Arab nations—Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates—severing diplomatic ties with the country over allegedly backing terror groups, including Islamic State. The four countries have not only declared to withdraw their diplomatic staff from Qatar, they have also said they plan to cut air and sea traffic to the peninsular country. While it is not clear how that would affect Qatar Airways, one of the region’s major long-haul carriers, but it could be a big jolt to the airline as well as tourism in and out of the country.

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Now visa free travel for Indian tourists to Far East Russia

Tourists and businessmen from India and 17 other countries can now travel to Russia’s Far East without a visa, informed Dmitry Medvedev, the Prime Minister of Russia. In order to boost tourism and investment in the region, the nationals of these 18 countries will have simplified entry procedures into Russia through the free port of Vladivostok. According to Pavel Volkov, Deputy Minister, Development of the Far East, tourists and entrepreneurs will only be required to fill a form on the website of Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Applications will be approved within four days. Electronic single entry visas will be issued directly at the Russian border and will be valid for 30 days. The 17 countries apart from India include Algeria, Bahrain, Brunei, Iran, Qatar, China, North Korea, Kuwait, Morocco, Mexico, UAE, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Tunisia, Turkey, and Japan. “I have recently approved the list of countries, whose nationals can take advantage of the preferential regime. We are proactively forming the modern infrastructure and creating special regimes in the far East; the law on visits to the Vladivostok free port was approved in March. This is not because these states are situated at a closer or longer distance – we are appropriately introducing bilateral agreements on visa-free travel for those ready to use such an approach for us,” said Medvedev. Volkov further said, “We’d like to see an increase in tourism to the region by at least 30 percent. Given the fact that every wealthy tourist spends at least $1,000 in the territory, we assume this will significantly increase the opportunities for the development of the region, trade turnover, and currency flows.” Source: Live Mint  

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Skål Asian Area Congress in Bahrain from May 12-15

Skål Asian Area has confirmed the program for its 2017 Annual Congress and General Assembly which will take place in Bahrain from May 12 to 15, 2017 at Gulf Hotel in Manama. The Chief Executive of the Bahrain Tourism and Exhibition Authority, Sheikh Khalid Bin Humood Al Khalifa, has been invited to make the opening address. Keynote addresses are also expected from local tourism industry executives representing such organisations as the Bahrain Economic Development Board, the Bahrain Airport Company, Sabre and SITA. Arun Raghavan, Asian Area Secretary, Skål International, stressed the value of the delegate packages. He said, “We have worked hard on the Congress package pricing to attract high numbers of delegates from our member clubs ensure maximum value and return. The packages are competitively priced and represent remarkable value. The 2017 Congress in Bahrain presents a fantastic opportunity to meet and network with fellow industry professionals.” Early bird discounts on the total registration package are available for a limited period. Delegates have the option of staying at the Gulf Hotel, K-Hotel and Ramada Bahrain hotels in Manama city. Bahrain’s national carrier Gulf Air has pledged to provide a 30 per cent discount on air fares for all delegates. Robert Sohn, Skål Asian Area President, said, “The Skål Club in the Kingdom of Bahrain has done an amazing job in developing at this early stage the programme for our 2017 Congress and General Assembly. I pay tribute to Skål Bahrain President Mohamed Buzizi and his committee for their fantastic achievement. I am looking forward to welcoming to Bahrain David Fisher – the newly-elected President of Skål International – and Skål members from clubs across the Asia Pacific region.”

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Bahrain delegates meet airlines from India

Senior delegates from Bahrain Airport Company (BAC), Economic Development Board and Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority recently held productive discussions with a number of potential airlines from India, as it looks forward to seeing Bahrain added to their expanding network. The delegation was attending the 22nd World Routes Development Forum held in Chengdu, China from 24–27 September 2016. Last year, The Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities (BACA) supported the ‘Little India in Bahrain’ initiative to celebrate and document the contribution of the Indian community to the history and progress of Bahrain and to boost cultural tourism in the kingdom. BAC is building a new passenger terminal at the Bahrain airport scheduled to be completed by 2020. The expansion is expected to increase the airport’s capacity to 14 million passengers a year from the current nine million passengers a year.

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