Tag Archives: Kerala

Ebix wins contract to provide forex services at new Kannur International Airport

EbixCash World Money airport forex counters has been inaugurated at the arrival and departure terminals at Kannur International Airport in the presence of Minister of Civil Aviation, Suresh Prabhu; Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan; Minister of Industries, Sports and Youth Affairs, EP Jayarajan; Minister of Ports, Kadakampally Surendran; Minister of Transport, AK Saseendran; Minister of Water Resources, K Krishnankutty; and KIAL MD, V Thulasidas among other senior central and state government officials, and industry leaders. EbixCash World Money will offer passengers flying in and out of the city, foreign exchange at competitive rates along with a host of other products such as travellers’ cheques, multi-currency prepaid cards and travel insurance. Commenting on the launch, T C Guruprasad, Managing Director, EbixCash WorldMoney said, “Kannur is a fast-growing business and tourism destination with Wayanad and Coorg being in close proximity. Besides being the district headquarters, it offers a mix of beaches, forts and museums. A large number of international flights also offer direct connectivity from Middle East destinations such as Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, Muscat, Riyadh, Doha and Kuwait, making it a strategic location for us to offer our forex and travel services. We currently have six branches and nine airport forex counters in Kerala.” Spread about 2,000 acres, the Kannur Airport is the newest addition to India’s international airport portfolio. The airport is expected to serve more than one million passengers annually with passenger traffic estimated to increase five-fold by 2025.    

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SIHRA Convention kicks off in Madurai

With its theme “Together for a Better Tomorrow”, SIHRA Convention is taking place from October 4-5, with participation from nearly 600 delegates. The convention looks at connecting all the south Indian states and brings about varied opportunities in exploring the hospitality and tourism fraternity. The event is expected to be a perfect mix of technology, emerging trends in the beverage and food industry, innovations in hotel projects and women leadership in the hospitality industry, among others. It is being supported by the departments of tourism, governments of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Puducherry.  The event will be inaugurated by Vellamandi N Natarajan, Minister for Tourism, Government of Tamil Nadu, in the presence of SP Velumani, Minister for Municipal Administration and Rural Development; KA Sengottaiyan, Minister for School Education; Shri Sellur K Raju, Minister for Co-operation; RB Udhaya Kumar, Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management and Dindigul C Sreenivasan, Minister for Forests Department. Edappadi K Palaniswami, Chief Minister, Tamil Nadu, said,  The state continues to hold the leading position in tourist arrivals, both domestic and international for the fourth year in a row. I am sure that SIHRA, which has over 1100 hotel and restaurant members playing a major role in providing comprehensive logistic support to all our tourists.” S K Hari Arumugam, Chairman, Organising Committee, SIHRA Convention 2018, said, “It is our objective that each and every fellow member is an integral part of this movement, empowered with a forum to voice concerns and have problems redressed and, to facilitate every member in  enabling them to take advantage of this event and enterprise.”

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Govt announces free of cost renewal of damaged passports in Kerala floods

Providing relief to residents of flood-affected Kerala, Sushma Swaraj, Minister of External Affairs, Government of India, has announced the free of cost renewal of all passports damaged in the Kerala floods. “There are unprecedented floods in Kerala causing huge damage. We have decided that as the situation becomes normal, passports damaged on account of floods shall be replaced free of charge. Please contact the concerned Passport Kendras,” announced Swaraj on Twitter.

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Nipah scare fades; Kerala safe for travel

Kerala government has said that its tourism scenario has breathed a sigh of relief with the Nipah virus scare, having been subdued. The virus outbreak had threatened to affect tourism arrivals to the state.  The state government also said that there has been no new cases of the Nipah virus attack reported over the past 21 days, and the state health department believes that the scare has waned off. “The health advisories issued by the State Health Department on May 22 and 25, 2018, soon after the Nipah virus had made its appearance, have now been withdrawn. The government believes that it is absolutely safe for travelers to arrive in Kerala,” a statement by the state government said. As per the latest health advisory released by the Kerala Health and Family Welfare Department, the Nipah virus outbreak is over in Kerala. The advisory substantiates this with the fact that there has been absolutely no new cases of the virus attack reported over the past 21 days, and this is more that the longest recorded incubation period of the virus. Travellers who had been putting off their travels plans owing to fear of the virus, can now be sure enough that it is absolutely safe to travel to Kerala. The scare has died off and the state’s destinations are safer as before, the statement said.

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Kerala records 10.9% rise in tourist arrivals in 2017

Tourist arrivals to Kerala have registered a significant growth of 10.93 per cent during 2017, compared to figures of the previous year. According to statistics compiled by Kerala Tourism, Kerala saw as many as 15.54 lakh tourists including both domestic and foreign travellers during the year. An increase of 15 lakh new domestic tourists was recorded this year, with footfalls going up to 1,46,73,520 in 2017 as against 1,31,72,535 in 2016. As per the report, it was found that foreign tourists preferred travelling to Thiruvananthapuram and Ernakulam districts, while also opting for destinations like Alappuzha, Munnar and Wayanad. In terms of specific locations, both foreign and domestic tourists were found to have preferred Kochi as a prime destination. According to Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Cooperation and Devaswoms, the statistics show up encouraging trends in terms of increasing footfalls both in the international as well as domestic segments. Rani George IAS, Secretary, Department of Tourism, said, “The trend in tourist arrivals over the past five years has shown a marked change in the pattern of tourist visits to different destinations. It is exciting that more destinations are being sought after by tourists, and that shows more destinations in Kerala are gaining in prominence in travellers’ minds.”  

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Kerala Budget proposes Rs 381 crore for tourism development

The tourism arena in Kerala will receive added support from the government with the state budget 2018 setting aside close to Rs 381 crore towards development and promotion of the sector. The budgetary provisioning is Rs 36 crore more than the Rs 345 crore that was set aside last year. Presenting the Budget in the Kerala Assembly, Dr Thomas Isaac, Minister for Finance, said the state government will focus more on conservation and preservation of heritage monuments in the coming financial year. The Finance Minister set aside Rs 82.50 crore towards marketing of the tourism sector. Lauding Kerala Tourism’s nine international awards last year, Dr Isaac said the government would accord priority to conservation of heritage monuments in the state as part of its plans towards tourism development. An amount to the tune of Rs 40 crore has been set aside in this regard. The Muziris project, which has been progressing at a slow pace, shall be speeded up and will be completed in a period of two years. Plans are also afoot to include destinations such as Thalassery, Ponnani and Beypore in the tourism map. Dr Thomas Isaac’s budget has also set aside Rs 16 crore towards organising cultural events such as the Kochi Muziris Biennale, Nishagandhi Dance and Music festivals, Onam celebrations, Thrissur Pooram, Theyyam festivals, boat races and others.  

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Adventure Rock Hill at Jatayu Earth Centre, Kerala opens for public

Jatayu Earth’s Center – Kerala’s first build–operate–transfer (BOT) model ecotourism project, ‘Adventure Rock Hill’, is now open for visitors. Located at Chadayamangalam in Kollam district of Kerala, the Jatayupara Nature Park was rechristened as Jatayu Earth’s Center. Covering four hills in Chadayamangalam, there are few more ventures pending to make the Nature Park fully operational by April 2018. Adventure Rock Hill is open for a group of 10-100 people, with entry of Rs 3500 per person. Spread across 65 acres, it offers abundant activities like camping, rock climbing, trekking, 6D theatre, a virtual reality museum, a Siddha and an Ayurvedic cave resort. The key highlight of the Jatayu Earth Centre is the world’s largest bird sculpture, which has an entry into the Guinness Book of World Records. Rajiv Anchal, Concept Designer, Chairman and Managing Director, Jatayu Earth’s Center, stated, “Considered as a glorious example of eco-friendly tourism in India, the center is a result of 10 years of sustained dedication. ‘Jatayu’ symbolises an era when humans and other living beings cared for each other and lived together peacefully.” P. Bala Kiran, Director, Kerala Tourism, said, “From adventure enthusiasts to families, young generation of travellers to couples, this tourist spot caters to a wide audience. The center allows the tourists to have thrilling experiences, while exploring the natural beauty of the place.”  

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Kerala Tourism unveiled Tourism Policy 2017

Kerala’s new Tourism Policy 2017, unveiled by Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Co-operation, Tourism and Devaswom, Government of Kerala, envisages creation of new customised products for attracting young travellers, professionals, students and artists to the state. The policy emphasises on the active participation of the differently-abled and transgenders, while implementing the Responsible Tourism Mission across the State to promote the tourism sector. Surendran said, “The new policy aims to address the key issues of the tourism industry in cooperation with the local bodies such as waste management and renovation of roads. The state has immense tourism potential to attract travellers from all corners of the world.” “Following the Responsible Tourism Mission, Kerala Tourism has guided all the regional bodies and authorities concerned to implement and follow the Green Protocol at all the destinations of Kerala,” he further added. The Department of Tourism, Kerala, has proposed to establish a Kerala Tourism Regulatory Authority (KTRA) to ensure quality service for tourists and curb unhealthy practices in the tourism sector.  

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Kerala Tourism launches Continuous Tourist Survey 2017-20 (CTS)

To accelerate the growth of tourism in Kerala, the Department of Tourism has launched a three-year long Continuous Tourist Survey 2017-20 (CTS). The Government of India will provide financial assistance of Rs. 25 lakhs, for the survey. During 2010-13, Kerala Tourism had conducted a similar Continuous Tourist Survey (CTS). One of the key findings of that survey was that a foreign tourist stays an average of 18 days in Kerala, while spending Rs. 81,000 on average. The Continuous Tourist Survey (CTS 17-20), conducted in collaboration with Datamation Consultants, intends to study in depth the interest of tourists, their age and demographic details, reasons for visit and nature of tours undertaken. A mobile application will be used by the enumerators of Datamation Consultants to collect various details. The survey will cover not only tourist destinations but also hotels, house boats, home stays, Ayurveda centers, restaurants, tour operators, etc. The Minister for Tourism Kadakampally Surendran, said, “Through the data obtained from the survey, the Tourism Department will evaluate the growth of tourism. The survey will provide us an accurate picture of tourists, likes and dislikes and help us to plan accordingly.” He added that Kerala has been following a comprehensive tourism development plan to double the number of domestic tourist arrivals and increase foreign tourist arrivals by 50%, by 2021. Speaking about the growing popularity of Kerala as a tourism destination, Dr. Venu.V, IAS, Principal Secretary, Department of Tourism, Government of Kerala stated, “With over 1 million foreign tourists and 13.1 million domestic tourist arrivals, Kerala has been witnessing tremendous growth in tourist traffic since the last couple of years. Kerala has now become a trendsetter in the Indian tourism industry and we …

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Strongest-ever participation by India at IFTM Top Resa 2017

India’s participation grew manifolds at IFTM Top Resa MAP Pro, France’s only multi-sector travel and tourism trade show. Indian states, such as, Kerala, Rajasthan, Karnataka and Goa received an overwhelming response from this market. India Tourism and the private sector created a buzz and saw great potential at the event held from September 25-28. The four-day event was attended by 30,929 industry professionals, demonstrating the vitality and energy that characterise the travel and tourism industry. As many as 1,694 brands were spread across 543 stands.

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