Tag Archives: Dubai

India becomes Dubai’s top source market with 2.1 million tourists

India retained the top spot on Dubai’s list of source markets in 2017, contributing 2.1 million visitors and becoming the first country to cross the two-million mark in a single year. The country’s performance represented a 15 per cent year-on-year increase and validated, among other factors, the success of Dubai Tourism’s ongoing collaboration with Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan in the #BeMyGuest campaign. Commenting on the annual performance, His Excellency Helal Saeed Almarri, Director General, Dubai Tourism, said, “Under the visionary leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, the emirate has continued to capture share of the global outbound travel market, complemented by a significant increase in tourism-driven economic contribution to the country’s GDP.” Driven by India, the South Asia region, in the third place, contributed an 18 per cent share of over 2.8 million visitors, up a strong 10.6 per cent, followed by the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and North and South-East Asia regions sharing the fourth position, each contributing close to 1.7 million visitors and independently commanding 11 per cent share, the former recording a 3.2 per cent increase and the latter, an impressive 23.6 per cent over 2016 visitation figures.  

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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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Now, SpiceJet to offer Dubai visa services

SpiceJet will reportedly offer Dubai visa services to Indian passengers in association with Cozmo Travel World. It will offer services for both 14 and 30-day tourist visa based on the passengers’ requirement. “The service is available to all Indian passport holders who fulfil the eligibility conditions prescribed by the UAE Visa authorities,” the airline said in a statement. “This facility can be availed by any person visiting Dubai (United Arab Emirates) and holding valid round trip tickets of the company. The visa service is available at a competitive rate starting from Rs 5,412 per passenger.” The airline said the facility is only for ‘single entry visa’, which stands valid for 59 days from the date of issue with a stay period of 13 days (14 days’ visa) or stay period of 29 days (30 days’ visa) from the date of entry.

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India cashes in on yoga & wellness at ATM 2017

India has been participating at the Arabian Travel Market (ATM) since its inception 24 years ago and this year is no different. Speaking at a media briefing held at ATM 2017, HE Vipul, Consul General of India, Dubai said, “We have 54 participants in total from India who are here at ATM including goverment agencies like IRCTC, ITDC, as well as a number of private tour operators. Two state governments Jammu & Kashmir and Kerala have put up stalls while officials from Madhya Pradesh are also participating. The theme this year is yoga and wellness and Dubai particularly has embraced yoga in a big way. There has been a consistent and positive growth from this region to India over the last 3 years with 2016 having registered an overall growth of around 17 per cent over the previous year. India is today the biggest source of tourist arrivals in UAE with the numbers increasing every year and with the simplification in e-Tourist Visa and introduction of e-business and e-medical visa, we expect more tourists to travel to India.” Gyan Bhushan, Economic Advisor, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India, highlighted the country’s growing tourism figures, and said, “India registered a growth of 10.6 per cent in 2016, which is higher than the global average of about 4.3 per cent. It is an all round destination and offers diversity throughout the year since we have the Himalayas, the desert, beaches, plains and much more. Our focus on health & medical tourism, wellness, cruise tourism, among others has grown as well since these are booming sectors.” Saket Saran, Country Head, Air India, reiterated the fact that traffic has been strong between Dubai and India and said, “The …

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Emirates introduces laptop and tablet handling service for US flights

Emirates has introduced a new service to enable customers to use their laptops and tablet devices until just before they board their flights to the US. Emirates customers travelling to the US via Dubai will be able to utilise their laptops and tablet devices on the first part of their journeys, and also during transit in Dubai. They must then declare and hand over their laptops, tablets, and other banned electronic devices to security staff at the gate just before boarding their US-bound flight. The devices will be carefully packed into boxes, loaded into the aircraft hold, and returned to the customer at their US destination. There will not be any charge for this service. Passengers on US-bound flights starting their journeys in Dubai are encouraged to pack their electronic devices into their check-in luggage in the first instance, to avoid delays. Customers should be aware that there will be a detailed search of all hand baggage on non-stop flights to the US from Dubai. They should therefore declare their devices before the search, or ensure their electronic devices are packed into their check-in luggage in the first instance. Sir Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline said: “Our aim is to ensure compliance with the new rules, while minimising disruption to passenger flow and impact on customer experience. Our new complimentary service enables passengers, particularly those flying for business, to have the flexibility to use their devices until the last possible moment. Once on board they can still stay connected on their mobile phones. Our historical data shows that on Emirates’ US flights, 90% of passengers using our onboard mobile and Wi-Fi connectivity services do so via their smart phones. Only …

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JA Resorts & Hotels to open property in Sri Lanka by end of 2017

Dubai-based JA Resorts & Hotels, that currently has properties in Maldives, Seychelles, and Dubai, will be making inroads into a new destination with its property in Sri Lanka. Pooja Wadhwa, Partner, Avant Garde Consulting, that is the promoting the group in India, reveals, “JA Resorts & Hotels is now making its way into a rather unexplored region in Sri Lanka later this year. Its third luxury beach resort, JA Eclipse Beach Resort, is under construction on the east coast of Sri Lanka and is due to open in the last quarter of 2017. It will be a premium tropical beach resort in Kathiraveli with 33 acres of greenery and a beach front of 450 metres.” Local design features such as laterite stone walls, wood teak ceiling, veneer teak walls, split granite and rich vibrant Sri Lankan textiles have been incorporated in to the design. Moreover, JA Hatta Fort Hotel, the group’s charming getaway retreat located an hour’s drive from Dubai, recently underwent a major refurbishment and is now all set to welcome guests for leisure, special occasions, business and incentive stays. It is set in 80 acres of manicured gardens in the majestic Hajar Mountain range and has quaint chalet-style rooms, with rock feature swimming pools and restaurants.

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DXB records 10% growth in Indian passengers during Jan-Sept

Dubai Airports welcomed 8.5 million Indian passengers during January-September, 2016. The total number of Indian passengers who travelled to Dubai (including transit passengers) in 2015 was 10.5 million. Lorne Riley, Director Corporate Communications, Communications and Business Development, Dubai Airports, says, “India is the largest source market for Dubai. Traffic from India till September has been recorded at 8.5 million but we will surpass the total traffic from last year by the end of 2016 and the total growth rate right now is 10 per cent between Dubai and India.” On an average 79 daily flights or 550 flights per week are operated between India and Dubai, informed Riley. He added, “Despite the capacity constraints, Indian airlines as a group are the fastest growing airlines that we have operating into Dubai International. Over the past 12 months, (November 2015 to November 2016) we have seen a 35 per cent increase in seats and 29 per cent increase in number of flights between India and Dubai.” Riley believes that by the end of 2020 Dubai International Airport will not only be the number one airport for international passenger traffic but also for total number of passenger traffic.

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Air India Express adds more routes to Sharjah

Air India Express will connect Sharjah with Chandigarh and Tiruchirapalli (in Tamil Nadu) from September. The airline will introduce three non-stop flights per week each from Chandigarh (IXC) and Tiruchirapalli (TRZ), to add Sharjah International Airport, bringing the total number of its routes between Sharjah and Indian destinations up to seven. India is one of the United Arab Emirates’ leading trade partners, accounting for some 9.8 percent of the country’s total non-oil trade, buying 14.9 percent of the Emirates’ exports and 8.7 percent of its re-exports. The total volume of bilateral trade between India and the UAE is expected to increase from $60 billion in 2014 to $100 billion by the year 2020. India is also the largest single origin of investors for Sharjah’s Hamriyah Free Zone and Sharjah International Airport Free Zone (SAIF Zone). Air India Express has been expanding its services to destinations in the UAE, including daily Mumbai-Dubai, Mumbai-Sharjah, New Delhi-Dubai and New Delhi-Abu Dhabi routes, which it added earlier this year. According to the airline, the number of its weekly flights between India and the UAE increased from 107 flights to 146 flights per week before the summer. The low-cost airline currently operates five routes with a total of 15 weekly flights to Sharjah International Airport. Air India Express now flies direct to Sharjah from Kochi (COK), Kozhikode (CCJ), Mumbai (SAHAR), New Delhi (DEL), Thiruvananthapuram (TRV) and Varanasi (VNS. India is well connected to Sharjah, with Sharjah-headquartered Air Arabia operating flights between Sharjah and 13 Indian destinations. Jet Airways, India’s second largest airline, operates direct daily flights on Sharjah-Kochi and Sharjah-Mangaluru (IXE) routes.

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JA Resorts & Hotels appoints India representative

Mumbai-based Avant Garde Consulting has taken on JA Resorts & Hotels as part of its connoisseur’s collection, which is a collection of seven properties spread across Dubai, and one each in the Maldives and Seychelles. Pooja Wadhwa, Partner, Avant Garde Consulting, said, “The company has an analogous marketing philosophy and market segmentation as ours, and we see a perfect fit for each of their properties in various segments within the ever evolving Indian market that desires an authentic and enriching experience. We look forward to building the JA Resorts & Hotels brand in India, and subsequently acquire a large market share for JA in India.” JA’s Portfolio includes seven properties in Dubai, JA Manafaru exclusive island resort in the Maldives and Enchanted Island Resort by JA in Seychelles, which is a super-luxurious 10 villa property each with private beach access and a private pool.

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Kerala brands 200 Dubai taxis

Kerala Tourism has rolled out a taxi campaign in Dubai targeting Arab travellers, showcasing the state’s features on taxis on the Dubai roads. Around 200 Kerala-branded taxis carry the message of ‘A Faraway Land Four Hours Away’– with visuals featuring hill stations, backwaters, waterfalls and also Ayurvedic therapies. The campaign will see the cabs take to the streets sporting wrappings aimed to promote the state’s Monsoon getaways. “Apart from the favourable climate, the relative proximity and excellent air connectivity between Kerala and the cities of the Middle East make it easier to attract holiday makers to the state,” said Dr. Venu V, Principal Secretary Tourism, Kerala. “Dubai, being the hub for air travel in the region, was the logical choice of location for the marketing campaign. The exposure and footfalls gained by Kerala will bear this out.” The campaign, inspired by the previous highly successful branding efforts on London taxi cabs and the Mumbai metro, will run until August 15. Besides serving to augment Kerala’s destination pull, it is an acknowledgment of the growing importance of the Middle East outbound tourist market. Kerala received more than one lakh visitors from the region in 2015, with some 20,506 tourists from the UAE alone. The majority came from Saudi Arabia with 51,149 Saudi nationals visiting last year, while Oman accounted for 18,763 footfalls. “As the holiday season in the Middle East coincides with the Monsoon season here, Kerala is well-positioned to benefit from the influx of travellers looking to trade in the sizzle and dust for cooler climes and greener pastures,” said U.V. Jose, Director, Kerala Tourism.

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